Alexander Belov

Alexander Alexandrovich Belov, commonly known as Sasha Belov[1] (November 9, 1951 – October 3, 1978) was a Soviet basketball player. During his playing career, he played at the center position. Belov is most remembered for scoring the game-winning basket of the gold medal game of the 1972 Munich Summer Olympic Games, which gave the gold medal to the senior Soviet national team.

Alexander Belov
Alexander Belov.jpg
Personal information
Born(1951-11-09)9 November 1951
Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Died3 October 1978(1978-10-03) (aged 26)
Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
NationalitySoviet / Russian
Listed height6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)
Listed weight210 lb (95 kg)
Career information
NBA draft1975 / Round: 10 / Pick: 161st overall
Selected by the New Orleans Jazz
Playing career1967–1978
PositionCenter
Number14
Career history
1967–1978Spartak Leningrad
Career highlights and awards
As player
FIBA Hall of Fame as player

Belov was named one of FIBA's 50 Greatest Players in 1991. He was enshrined into the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2007.[2]

Club careerEdit

Born in Leningrad, Belov was the star player of Spartak Leningrad (later known as Spartak St. Petersburg), as he led the club to the Soviet Union League title in 1975, and also to three European-wide 2nd-tier level FIBA European Cup Winners' Cup (Saporta Cup) Finals, in the years 1971, 1973, and 1975. Including winning the title in both 1973 and 1975. During his club career, Belov was a two-time FIBA European Selection, in the years 1971, and 1972.

In 2016, the club that Belov played for was renamed to Kondrashin Belov, for a short time. The club was renamed in honor of both Belov, and the club's former legendary head coach Vladimir Kondrashin.

1975 NBA draftEdit

In the tenth round of the 1975 NBA draft, the New Orleans Jazz selected Belov with the 161st pick of the draft; like the vast majority of Soviet players drafted into North American sports leagues, he would never end up playing for the team that drafted him. It would not be until 1989, that the first Soviet player, Lithuanian-born Šarūnas Marčiulionis, would play in the National Basketball Association (NBA).

National team careerEdit

Belov won four gold medals with the senior Soviet Union national team. While representing the USSR, Belov won gold medals at the 1969 EuroBasket, and the bronze medal at the 1970 FIBA World Championship. He also won the gold medal at the 1971 EuroBasket.

The highlight of Belov's career occurred during the 1972 Summer Olympic Games, when he scored the game-winning basket in the Olympic Basketball Final against Team USA, which gave the Soviet Union the gold medal. After that, he won the gold medal at the 1974 FIBA World Championship, the silver medal at the 1975 EuroBasket, and the bronze medal at the 1976 Summer Olympics.

Life and deathEdit

Belov was born in Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union, on 9 November 1951. Belov died in Leningrad, on 3 October 1978, at the age of 26. His cause of death was a very rare disease, cardiac sarcoma.[3]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ 101 Greats: Alexander "Sasha" Belov.
  2. ^ "Aleksander Belov Bio". FIBA. February 24, 2007. Archived from the original on July 11, 2011. Retrieved November 29, 2010.
  3. ^ "Alexander Belov dies". The Free Lance–Star. Fredericksburg, Virginia. Associated Press. October 5, 1978.

External linksEdit