Dragić with Slovenia in 2017
|No. 7 – Miami Heat|
|Born||6 May 1986|
Ljubljana, SR Slovenia, Yugoslavia
|Listed height||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Listed weight||190 lb (86 kg)|
|NBA draft||2008 / Round: 2 / Pick: 45th overall|
|Selected by the San Antonio Spurs|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Stats at NBA.com|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
Goran Dragić (born 6 May 1986) is a Slovenian professional basketball player for the Miami Heat of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Nicknamed "The Dragon", he had played professional basketball in Slovenia and Spain before entering the NBA in 2008. Dragić has also played for the Phoenix Suns and the Houston Rockets. He was an All-NBA Third Team selection and the NBA Most Improved Player with the Suns in 2014. He was named an NBA All-Star for the first time in 2018 with Miami. He led the senior Slovenian national team to its first FIBA EuroBasket title in 2017, while being named the Most Valuable Player of the tournament.
Dragić began his professional career in 2003, at the age of 17, in the Slovenian Second Basketball League with KD Ilirija. He played there for one year, before transferring to the top level Slovenian Basketball League and Adriatic League club Slovan, in 2004. After spending two years with Slovan, he transferred to the Spanish ACB League club Saski Baskonia, who loaned him to the Spanish club Murcia, in 2006.
Dragić joined the Slovenian club Union Olimpija in 2007, and he played there during the 2007–08 season, winning the Slovenian League championship with the team.
Phoenix Suns (2008–2011)
Dragić entered the 2008 NBA draft, where he was selected in the second round, 45th overall, by the San Antonio Spurs. His draft rights were then traded to the Phoenix Suns in exchange for the draft rights to Malik Hairston, the 48th pick. After the Suns finished a deal with TAU Ceramica (now known as Caja Laboral), with whom he was under contract, they officially signed him on 22 September 2008. The Suns hoped that he would take over the starting point guard position after Steve Nash relinquished it. On 25 January 2010, Dragić scored a then career high 32 points, hitting 6 of 7 three-pointers in a losing effort against the Utah Jazz.
On 7 May 2010, during game 3 of the Western Conference Semifinals, he led a Phoenix Suns comeback against the team that originally drafted him, the San Antonio Spurs, scoring 23 of his total 26 points in the fourth quarter. Dragić scored his points on 10/13 FG attempts including 5/5 three-pointers and a 4-point play, as the Suns overcame an early 18-point deficit to defeat the Spurs 110–96 and take a 3–0 lead in their best of seven series in the Western Conference Semifinals. "I think it's safe to say that may have been the best fourth-quarter performance I have ever seen in a playoff game", Suns forward Grant Hill said.
Houston Rockets (2011–2012)
On 24 February 2011, Dragić was traded to the Houston Rockets along with a protected first-round pick in exchange for Aaron Brooks. On 13 April 2011, in the Rockets' season finale, Dragić recorded his first career triple-double with 11 points, 11 assists and 11 rebounds in a 121–102 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
During the 2011 NBA lockout, he played for Saski Baskonia of Spain. He played for a brief period of time there until the lockout ended. He returned to the Rockets for the 2011–12 season. Throughout most of the season, Dragić continued to be used as a bench player as a means to help the Rockets out during the lockout shortened season. In March 2012, he filled in for Kyle Lowry, who was out with a bacterial infection. On 9 April 2012, Dragić won the Western Conference Player of the Week.
Second stint with the Suns (2012–2015)
In 2012, Dragić became an unrestricted free agent. He agreed to sign a 4-year, $30 million deal with a player option on the final year with the Phoenix Suns and officially became a member of the team again on 19 July 2012. He was brought in to replace Steve Nash, whom he played behind during his first stint with the Suns, as starting point guard. On 19 February 2013, Dragić recorded a career-high 18 assists to go with 14 points as the Suns defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 102–98. Dragić nearly recorded a triple-double against the Brooklyn Nets with 31 points, 12 assists, and 9 rebounds on 24 March 2013. Despite suffering through a 25–57 season, Dragić ended up gaining some career high moments in the process.
After getting Eric Bledsoe from a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers, the Suns ultimately decided to move Dragić to the shooting guard position as a means of putting less pressure on Dragić to distribute the ball to his teammates. In his first game playing with Bledsoe as a teammate, Dragić led the team with 26 points and 9 assists in a 104–91 season opening victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. Dragić had over 8 games with 30 points or more, including a double-double of 31 points and 10 assists in a victory against the Portland Trail Blazers on 27 November 2013. He also had what was, at the time, a career-high 33 points in a loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on 2 January 2014. On 3 February 2014, Dragić won his second career Western Conference Player of the Week award and his first with the Suns for games played between 27 January – 2 February 2014. Three days later, he was paired with Oklahoma City Thunder guard Reggie Jackson in the revamped, team-based Skills Challenge at the All-Star weekend
On 8 February 2014, Dragić scored a career-high 34 points— while attempting only 13 field-goals— to go along with 10 assists in a 122–109 home victory over the Golden State Warriors. On 23 February 2014, Dragić scored a new career-high 35 points, along with 3 assists and 3 steals, in a 112–115 loss to the Houston Rockets. On 28 February 2014, he recorded a new career-high 40 points, along with 3 rebounds and 5 assists, in a 116–104 win over the New Orleans Pelicans. He became the first player, since Rod Strickland in 1985–86, to set career highs in points three times in a single month. Dragić also became the sixth player, after his head coach Jeff Hornacek, Dražen Petrović, Dirk Nowitzki, LeBron James, and Kevin Durant, to join the 20-50-40 Club — averaging 20 or more points per game while shooting 50%+ from the field and 40%+ on three-pointers. He also averaged over 5 assists per game throughout the season as well, leaving him joining the likes of Larry Bird, Jeff Hornacek and LeBron James.
On 23 April 2014, Dragić won the 2014 NBA Most Improved Player Award. One month later, he would end up being honored by his home nation with their national "Apple of Inspiration" award for being a role model and inspiring hope in Slovenia, as well as helping out the nation's community with humanitarian activities. Finally, on 4 June 2014, Dragić was named to the 2014 All-NBA Third Team alongside Damian Lillard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Al Jefferson and Paul George.
Miami Heat (2015–present)
On 19 February 2015, Dragić and his brother, Zoran, were traded to the Miami Heat in a three-team deal also involving the New Orleans Pelicans. Two days later, he made his debut for the Heat, recording 12 points and 3 rebounds in a 105–91 loss to the New Orleans Pelicans. Dragić finished the season averaging 16.6 points and 5.3 assists per game in 26 starts for Miami, as the Heat missed the playoffs.
On 9 July 2015, Dragić re-signed with the Heat to a five-year, $90 million contract. In January 2016, he missed eight straight games because of a left calf injury. On 20 February 2016, he recorded a season-high 24 points, eight assists and seven rebounds in a 114–84 win over the Washington Wizards. He bested that season high on 11 March, recording 26 points and nine assists in a 118–96 win over the Chicago Bulls. On 7 April, he recorded 16 points and a career-high 12 rebounds in a 106–98 win over the Chicago Bulls, helping the Heat sweep the season series with the Bulls for the first time since the 2003–04 season. In the Heat's second-round playoff match-up with the Toronto Raptors, Dragić scored a postseason career-high 30 points to help the Heat to a 103–91 victory in Game 6, tying the series at 3–3. The Heat went on to lose Game 7, bowing out of the playoffs with a 4–3 defeat.
On 28 November 2016, Dragić recorded season highs of 27 points and 17 assists in a 112–104 loss to the Boston Celtics. He topped that mark on 6 December 2016, scoring 29 points (his highest-scoring total as a member of the Heat at the time) in a 114–103 loss to the New York Knicks. Dragić set a new season high six days later, scoring 34 points in a 112–101 win over the Washington Wizards. On 6 February 2017, he scored 33 points and hit a career-high seven three-pointers to lead the Heat to their 11th straight victory with a 115–113 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
On 8 November 2017, Dragić scored a season-high 29 points in a 126–115 win over the Phoenix Suns. On 27 November 2017, he was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week for games played Monday, 20 November through Sunday, 26 November. On 15 January 2018, he was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week for games played Monday, 8 January through Sunday, 14 January. It was his fourth career Player of the Week honor. On 1 February, Dragić was named the replacement for Kevin Love on Team LeBron for the 2018 NBA All-Star Game, thus making him an All-Star for the first time in his career.
On 27 October 2018, Dragić scored 28 points in a 120–111 win over the Portland Trail Blazers, becoming the first Slovenian player to reach the 10,000-point mark in the NBA. In late November and early December, he missed eight games with a sore right knee. On 19 December, he underwent successful surgery to clean up his right knee. He returned to action on 23 February 2019 against the Detroit Pistons. On 28 March, he recorded his second career triple-double with 23 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in a 105–99 win over the Dallas Mavericks.
In the 2019-20 NBA season, Dragic helped the Heat reach the 2020 NBA Finals, but the Heat lost the series in 6 games. Dragic missed 4 games in the Finals due to a plantar fasciitis injury that he suffered in Game 1.
National team career
Slovenian junior national team
Slovenian senior national team
Dragić competed with the senior men's Slovenian national basketball team at the 2006 FIBA World Championship and the 2007 EuroBasket, in limited roles. Dragić's role with the Slovenian national basketball team began to increase in the 2009 EuroBasket and the 2010 FIBA World Championship. He then played with his brother Zoran in the 2011 EuroBasket and the 2013 EuroBasket, the latter which was held in Slovenia. During the 2013 tournament, Goran and his brother helped lead Slovenia to a 5th-place finish and a spot in the 2014 FIBA World Cup. Dragić finished in the 2013 EuroBasket's top five in points and assists, which earned him a spot on the All-Tournament Team. In 2014, Dragić was named Slovenia's team captain after Jaka Lakovič retired from national team play. In the friendly games before the 2014 FIBA World Cup, Dragić was rested in 9 of their 14 games, before actually playing in the official tournament's matches. After finishing up their friendly games, Dragić played with no restrictions beyond the rest of the competition; he was the only All-NBA Team member to play in the 2014 FIBA World Cup, aside from the Team USA members.
Prior to the 2017 EuroBasket, Dragić announced that he would retire from playing with the Slovenian national team after the tournament. At the tournament, he helped Slovenia to win its first ever FIBA European championship. He scored 35 points, on 12-22 shooting in the final, which was the most points scored in a final, since Pau Gasol scored 36 points in the 2003 final. Following his performance, Dragić was given the Most Valuable Player award of the tournament, after averaging 22.6 points per game, in 9 games played. Following that performance, he was named the 2017 Slovenian Sportsman of the year.
Dragić was born to a Slovenian mother and Serbian father. He grew up in Slovenia playing football. However, an injury forced him to switch sports. As a child, he admired NBA players Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson and former teammate Steve Nash. He is fluent in Slovenian, Serbian, Spanish, and English. Dragić's younger brother, Zoran, was formerly his teammate on the Phoenix Suns and Miami Heat, and currently plays in Spain for KirolBET Baskonia.
He and Zoran, alongside teammates Markieff and Marcus Morris, all briefly played together for the Suns during the fourth quarter of their 112–96 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on 2 January 2015. It marked the first time in the NBA's history that two different pairs of brothers played together for the same team at the same time.
NBA career statistics
|GP||Games played||GS||Games started||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field goal percentage||3P%||3-point field goal percentage||FT%||Free throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game||SPG||Steals per game|
|BPG||Blocks per game||PPG||Points per game||Bold||Career high|
Awards and accomplishments
- Won the gold medal at the FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship (2004)
- Slovenian League Rookie of the Year (2005)
- Slovenian League All-Star (2005, 2006)
- Winner of the FIBA Borislav Stanković Tournament (2007, 2010)
- Won the Slovenian League national championship (2008)
- Won the MVP award for the FIBA Borislav Stanković Tournament (2010)
- Named Western Conference Player of the Week, 4/2-4/8 (Houston, 2012)
- Member of the EuroBasket All-Tournament Team (2013)
- Named Western Conference Player of the Week, 1/27-2/2 (Phoenix, 2014)
- Contestant for the Taco Bell Skills Challenge (2014)
- Member of the 20-50-40 Club (2014)
- Won the NBA Most Improved Player of the Year Award (2014)
- Jabolko Navdiha (Apple of Inspiration) by President of the Republic of Slovenia (2014)
- Member of the All-NBA Third Team (2014)
- FIBA EuroBasket MVP (2017)
- Member of the EuroBasket All-Tournament Team (2017)
- NBA All-Star (2018)
- "Suns Sign Goran Dragic | The Official Site Of The Phoenix Suns". Nba.com. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "New suns may play tonight". Azcentral.com. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
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- "Phoenix Suns vs. San Antonio Spurs - Recap - May 07, 2010 - ESPN". Scores.espn.go.com. 7 May 2010. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Phoenix Suns trade Goran Dragic for Aaron Brooks from Houston Rockets". azcentral.com. Retrieved 25 August 2011.
- "Rockets trade Battier, Brooks in separate deals". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 25 August 2011.
- "Rockets send Timberwolves to 15th straight loss". ESPN.com. 13 April 2011. Retrieved 29 March 2019.
- "CAJA LABORAL tabs guard Dragic - 2011-12 SIGNINGS - Welcome to EUROLEAGUE BASKETBALL". Euroleague.net. 20 November 2011. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Rockets' Dragic, Heat's James named Players of the Week". NBA.com. 9 April 2012. Archived from the original on 9 March 2014. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Goran Dragic Salary Cap, Contracts, Salaries, Cap Hits, & News Profile". Spotrac.com. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Lowry, Dragic named Players of the Week". NBA.com. Archived from the original on 4 February 2014. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Notebook: Suns 122, Warriors 109". NBA.com. 8 February 2014. Archived from the original on 18 May 2018. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Notebook: Rockets 115, Suns 112". Archived from the original on 26 May 2019. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- on YouTube
- "Notebook: Suns 116, Pelicans 104". Archived from the original on 26 May 2019. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- on YouTube
- "Suns' Dragic wins Kia Most Improved Player award". Archived from the original on 28 January 2018. Retrieved 23 April 2014.
- Basketball Player Dragić Honoured by President Pahor
- "Durant, LeBron headline 2013-14 All-NBA First Team". Archived from the original on 4 June 2014. Retrieved 4 June 2014.
- "HEAT Acquire Goran Dragic and Zoran Dragic". NBA.com. 19 February 2015. Retrieved 19 February 2015.
- "Pelicans lose Davis and Anderson, roll past Heat 105-91". NBA.com. 21 February 2015. Archived from the original on 23 February 2015. Retrieved 22 February 2015.
- "HEAT Re-Signs Goran Dragic". NBA.com. 9 July 2015. Retrieved 13 July 2015.
- Stein, Marc (1 July 2015). "Goran Dragic, Miami Heat agree to five-year, $90 million deal". ESPN.com. Retrieved 1 July 2015.
- Braun, Rick (28 January 2016). "Miami Heat guard Goran Dragic likely to return Friday night vs. Bucks". MiamiHerald.com. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
- "Whiteside has 25 points, 23 rebounds; Heat beat Wizards". NBA.com. 20 February 2016. Archived from the original on 9 February 2017. Retrieved 21 February 2016.
- "Dragic scores 26 as Heat beat Bulls 118-96". NBA.com. 11 March 2016. Archived from the original on 8 January 2017. Retrieved 11 March 2016.
- "Heat rally past Bulls, 106-98 for 46th win of the season". NBA.com. 7 April 2016. Archived from the original on 9 December 2018. Retrieved 7 April 2016.
- "Dragic, Wade lead Heat past Raptors 103-91 _ and into Game 7". NBA.com. 13 May 2016. Archived from the original on 9 December 2018. Retrieved 14 May 2016.
- "Thomas scores 25, Celtics get past Heat 112-104". ESPN.com. 28 November 2016. Retrieved 29 November 2016.
- "Anthony scores 35, Knicks beat depleted Heat 114-103". ESPN.com. 6 December 2016. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
- "Dragic scores 34, Heat beat Wizards 112-101 to snap slide". ESPN.com. 12 December 2016. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
- "Dragic leads Heat to 11th straight win, 115-113 over Wolves". ESPN.com. 6 February 2017. Retrieved 7 February 2017.
- "Goran Dragic scores season-high 29, Heat beat Suns 126-115". ESPN.com. 8 November 2017. Retrieved 8 November 2017.
- "Goran Dragic Named Eastern Conference Player of the Week". NBA.com. 27 November 2017. Retrieved 28 November 2017.
- "Goran Dragić Named Eastern Conference Player Of The Week". NBA.com. 15 January 2018. Retrieved 15 January 2018.
- "Dragic Selected to 2018 NBA All-Star Team". NBA.com. 1 February 2018. Retrieved 1 February 2018.
- "Dragic scores 28, Heat outlast Trail Blazers 120-111". ESPN.com. 27 October 2018. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
- "Adebayo's career-high 22 points helps Heat beat Suns 115-98". ESPN.com. 7 December 2018. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
- "Goran Dragić Undergoes Surgery". NBA.com. 19 December 2018. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
- "Pistons reach 7th in East, top reeling Heat 119-96". ESPN.com. 23 February 2018. Retrieved 24 February 2018.
Miami got point guard Goran Dragic on the floor for the first time since Dec. 10, after a two-month rehab to recover from right knee surgery.
- "Dragic's triple-double lifts Heat past Mavs, 105-99". ESPN.com. 28 March 2019. Retrieved 29 March 2019.
- Winderman, Ira (29 August 2017). "Miami Heat guard Goran Dragic to retire from international play after EuroBasket". Sun-Sentinel. Deerfield Beach, Florida. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
- "Goran Dragic leads Slovenia to EuroBasket gold with 35 points - Heat Zone". Retrieved 22 July 2019.
- "Title hero Dragic caps off fairy tale finish with MVP honors". FIBA.basketball. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
- "Title hero Dragic caps off fairy tale finish with MVP honors". fiba.basketball. 17 September 2017.
-  Archived 2 March 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- "Goran Dragic Stats, Video, Bio, Profile". NBA.com. Archived from the original on 25 October 2013. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Goran Dragic Stats, Video, Bio, Profile | NBA.com". Nba.us. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Suns Sign Zoran Dragić". NBA.com. 29 September 2014. Retrieved 30 September 2014.
- "EA7 Milan inks Dragic at guard". Euroleague.net. 7 July 2016. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Dragić vzel le en prost dan, da se je oženil". Delo.si. 23 August 2013. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Sloveniji bo zdaj poveljeval poročeni Dragić | EP 2013 - Planet". Siol.net. 22 August 2013. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Defense has helped the Suns become the NBA's surprise team". Valleyofthesuns.com. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Green helps Suns pull away from 76ers, 112-96". Archived from the original on 1 September 2017. Retrieved 9 January 2015.
- "Goran Dragić posetio Igokeu, Dodik ga odlikovao Njegoševim ordenom". b92.net. Retrieved 16 August 2018.
- "Sem Slovenec , pravoslavne vere. Na današnji praznik ti želim, mir v duši in radost v srcu". twitter.com. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- "МИР БОЖИЈИ, ХРИСТОС СЕ РОДИ!". twitter.com. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- "Dragic Honored with MVP, Yi Entered Best Team_2010 DONGFENG YUEDA KIA STANKOVIC CONTINENTAL CUP". Bscup.tom.com. 1 August 2010. Archived from the original on 6 April 2012. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
- "Rockets' Dragić, Heat's James named Players of the Week". Archived from the original on 11 April 2012. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
- "Dragić Named Western Conference Player of Week".
- "Dragic presented with 'Apple of Inspiration' from Slovenian president". Retrieved 21 February 2015.