The name Blatt is forever stitched into the fiber of Maccabi Tel Aviv. That said, it is almost hard to believe that when Tamir Blatt takes the court for the first time this season, he will become the first member of his family to ever play for the club.
His father, David Blatt, led Maccabi to its last EuroLeague crown in 2014 and was inducted into the club's Hall of Fame last season. Tamir is a member of the Israeli national team, grew up rooting for Maccabi, and has played for several of the biggest clubs in Israel. Yet this season will be his first wearing the yellow-and-blue uniform.
"I mean, as a child, I have great memories here," Tamir said. "You know, being 5-6 years old, they're coming to practice and watching all-time greats of the EuroLeague practicing and to the games, of course, yeah. And I have a lot of incredible memories from being a child and watching.
"Growing up, coming to games, I remember I was sitting right here at Gate 7 and watching the games, and with the energy and the incredible support from the fans, I wanted to be on the court. And now you have the chance to play for Maccabi. It's amazing."
Tamir played in the youth system of Lev Hasharon and began his professional career with Maccabi rival Hapoel Tel Aviv. He also had stints with Hapoel Holon and Hapoel Jerusalem before heading abroad for the past two seasons to play for ALBA Berlin in the EuroLeague. Now the younger Blatt is poised to take on a key role with Maccabi. But he is not trying to step out of his father's shadow, but rather embracing his special status.
"First of all, I'm always David Blatt's son. That's the first thing," he noted. "And then, yeah, I mean, I always wanted to create my own story and I have done that. And now coming to Maccabi, playing in the EuroLeague is a is another step for me and I'm very excited about it."