Basketball - 2006
From the playgrounds of Westchester to the hardcourts of Sacramento, the hoops in Italy to the nets of Russia, David Bluthenthal has been an international ambassador for the sport of basektball.
David Bluthenthal starred at Westchester High before building a solid collegiate career at the University of Southern California. Though he initially wanted to attend UCLA, Bluthenthal was steered toward USC - a legacy of sorts, given that Bluthenthal’s great, great, great grandfather, Isaias Hellman, was one of the three major donors of the land where USC sits today. David received All-Pac 10 honorable mention for all three of his years starting at USC, setting several school and conference marks along the way. As a sophomore, he tied the school’s single-game rebounding record with 28 rebounds (against Arizona State), and became the first player in Pac-10 history to lead the league in rebounding and free throw shooting in conference games. As a junior, he broke the Pac-10 record for consecutive free throws made in conference games with 42 (the record was broken by Stanford’s Ryan Mendez later in the year).
In his senior year Bluthenthal had an outstanding 2001 NCAA Tournament, leading USC to their first Elite Eight appearance since 1954. He averaged 16.0 points per game, and the Trojans upset No. 3 Boston College and No. 2 Kentucky to tie the school record of 24 wins in a season. Bluthenthal had 17 points and 13 rebounds (tying his season high), but the Trojans lost to Duke in the East Regional Final. After graduating from USC, Bluthenthal joined Israeli powerhouse Maccabi Tel Aviv. During the 2002-03 season, Maccabi won the Israel League title with 52 points and a 25-2 record. In the EuroLeague, they finished fifth in the group stage and reached the quarterfinals.
Bluthenthal signed with the Sacramento Kings in 2004, then rejoined Maccabi Tel-Aviv later that year, helping lead the team to its fourth European Cup. In the championship game, Bluthenthal scored 20 points on 8-10 shooting (including 4-5 from 3-point range) in only 17 minutes of play. In the Israel League, he helped lead Maccabi to the national title in 2003-04. Bluthenthal also played for the Houston Rockets during their 2005 Summer League in Minnesota.