Dražen Dalipagić

Dražen Dalipagić

Dalipagić in Umag in 2007
Personal information
Born (1951-11-27) November 27, 1951
Mostar, PR Bosnia-Herzegovina, FPR Yugoslavia
Nationality Serbian[1] / Bosnian / Yugoslav
Listed height 6 ft 5.75 in (1.97 m)
Listed weight 210 lb (95 kg)
Career information
NBA draft 1973 / Undrafted
Playing career 1971–1991
Position Small forward
Number 14, 15
Career history
As player:
1980–1981 Reyer Venezia
1981–1982 Partizan
1982–1983 Real Madrid
1983–1985 A.P.U. Udine
1985–1988 Reyer Venezia
1988–1989 Glaxo Verona
1990–1991 Red Star Belgrade
As coach:
1992–1996 Nuova Pallacanestro Gorizia
1998–1999 MZT Skopje
2000–2001 KK Astra Banka
Career highlights and awards
Basketball Hall of Fame as player
FIBA Hall of Fame as player

Dražen "Praja" Dalipagić (born November 27, 1951) is a Yugoslav-Serbian[2] retired professional basketball player and head coach. He was selected the best athlete of Yugoslavia in the year 1978, and is one of the most decorated athletes in Yugoslavian history. He was named one of FIBA's 50 Greatest Players in 1991. Dalipagić was enshrined into the Basketball Hall of Fame, as a player, on September 10, 2004. He was enshrined as a player, into the FIBA Hall of Fame, in 2007. In 2008, he was named one of the 50 Greatest Euroleague Contributors.

Professional career

Dalipagić started playing basketball at the age of 19, and one year later he signed his first professional contract with Partizan in 1971. He stayed in Partizan for eight seasons, until 1980. Over that time, he won the European Player of the Year Mr. Europa award twice, in 1977 and 1978, and the European Player of the Year Euroscar award, in 1980. He was declared the best athlete of Yugoslavia in 1978. In 1976, he led Partizan to the Yugoslav League title, and also to the FIBA Korać Cup title in 1978.

In 1980–81 season, he went abroad for the first time in his career. That season he played for the Italian team Reyer Venezia. After just one season, he returned to his former club Partizan for one season. In the following seasons, he played for numerous European teams, including: Real Madrid, Reyer Venezia and Glaxo Verona. He finished his professional career in 1990–91 season, playing for Partizan's archrivals Red Star Belgrade.

Yugoslavian national team

Dalipagić (#14) and Željko Jerkov (#8) watch Andro Knego and Renzo Vecchiato go up for a rebound in Yugoslavia's 102-81 blowout against Italy at the 1980 Olympics.

Dalipagić debuted for the Yugoslavian national basketball team back in 1973. Since then, he played 243 games between 1973 and 1986, winning the gold medal at the 1978 FIBA World Championship, and the gold medal at the 1980 Summer Olympics. As a member of the Yugoslavian national team, he also won three gold medals at the FIBA European Championship. His four medals in the FIBA World Cup (Silver, 1974 FIBA World Championship; Gold, 1978 FIBA World Championship; Bronze, 1982 FIBA World Championship, and 1986 FIBA World Championship) is tied for the all-time international basketball record. A three-time Olympian, Dalipagić was instrumental in the Yugoslavian team's capturing of the gold, at the 1980 Summer Olympics.

Personal life

Dalipagić finished high school at the Technical School in Mostar, and graduated from the Teachers College in Belgrade. He is married to Sonja Požeg, former Yugoslav tennis player. They have two children, Sanja and Davorin.


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