Dalipagić in Umag in 2007
November 27, 1951 |
Mostar, PR Bosnia-Herzegovina, FPR Yugoslavia
|Listed height||6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)|
|Listed weight||210 lb (95 kg)|
|NBA draft||1973 / Undrafted|
|1992–1996||Nuova Pallacanestro Gorizia|
|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 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 Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a player in 2004 and into the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2007. In 2008, he was named one of the 50 Greatest EuroLeague Contributors.
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 Mr. Europa European Player of the Year 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 after the 1990–91 season, playing for Partizan's archrivals Red Star Belgrade.
Yugoslavian national team
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 EuroBasket. 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.
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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