The Croatian coach left Rytas for the five time European cup winners in the summer, but so far the Lithuanians demand for €100,000 in compensation has not been met.

Rytas' President has Gedvydas Vainauskas has now called on FIBA to ban Spahija for two years, and has sent copies of Spahija's former contract with Rytas to: FIBA, the Israeli Basketball Association, and to the coach himself.

Euroleague
CSKA cruise in Euroleague opener
22/10/2007 AT 14:25

Speaking to Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz, Vainauskas admitted that he is furious with how the situation has been allowed to develop.

"We have asked FIBA to ban Spahija from coaching for the next two years and we expect an answer shortly," he said.

"FIBA officials have told me that they are aware of the situation. Maccabi and Spahija had three months to pay compensation but that didn't happen.

"As far as I'm concerned, the issue of compensation is no longer relevant. Spahija didn't keep his word and I want to make sure that this kind of thing doesn't happen again in basketball."

Meanwhile, Spahija's attorney, Danko Drakolic, has also now emerged as a key figure in the story.

The Rytas website claimed on Monday that Drakolic said that Rytas' hopes of joining the Euroleague next season would be in danger if they refused to cut all ties with Spahija.

"According to Neven Spahija's lawyer Danko Drakolic his client's contract with Maccabi was legitimate. However, Mr. Drakolic has failed to present any official documents confirming such," the website claimed

"Moreover, in the letter to BC Lietuvos Rytas, Danko Drakolic made a warning that if BC Lietuvos Rytas did not cancel Neven Spahija's contract, the club was going to have problems entering the Euroleague next season.

"According to Danko Drakulic's letter, managers of Maccabi have a significant influence on the board of the Euroleague," the site added.

In a counter claim, Drakolic said that during the negotiations for Spahija's release, Rytas were promised the help of Maccabi, whose chairman Shimon Mizrahi is a member of the Euroleague executive, in securing a Euroleague place next season if they released Spahija.

Drakolic also claims he told Vainauskas that Rytas' Euroleague spot would be "assured" if they replaced Spahija with Sharon Drucker, and that that offer was enthusiastically accepted by Vainauskas.

Drucker will coach Rytas in the ULEB Cup this season, while Maccabi Tel Aviv will be hoping to make their fourth successive Euroleague final.

Euroleague
Zalgiris stadium fight drags on
18/07/2007 AT 04:58
Euroleague
Panathinaikos hailed by Greek media
07/05/2007 AT 14:07