Former NBA player recalls Nets’ Drazen Petrovic spraining knee & missing a few games rather than a few months

Drazen Petrovic
Drazen Petrovic

Retired NBA vet Chucky Brown checked in with Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson and talked about Drazen Petrovic on Scoop B Radio. Press Play Below To Listen!

Drazen Petrovic was ahead of his time. Dallas Mavs forward Dirk Nowitzki was everything that he was supposed to be.

AND…he checked Michael Jordan in the Olympics!

25 years ago; four and a half months before his 29th birthday and shortly after a Nets first round elimination to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 1993 Playoffs, Petrović died in a traffic accident on the Autobahn.

His best season, his last, he posted 22 points and close to 4 assists in 70 games under late New Jersey Nets head coach, Chuck Daly and teammates Kenny Anderson and Derrick Coleman

In five NBA seasons, Petro averaged 15 points per game.

His former coach, Chuck Daly once compared Petro to late President John F. Kennedy. “You know, there is a saying that we have about JFK, John F. Kennedy: ‘You know, Johnny, we never got to know you,” said the late coach.

“And I kind of feel that way about Drazen. I felt that the whole year that I was with him went by too fast and I really never got to know him the way I would have liked to.”

The Nets would retire Petrovic’s jersey the following season. Petrovic left an imprint on the league in a short time, too.

He was a good dude, man,” former NBA player Chucky Brown told me on Scoop B Radio.

“He was a quiet guy. Every now and then he will crack a joke. He wasn’t like one of the other guys that was real loud, he  didn’t want a lot of attention and stuff like that. Every now and then he will crack a joke; and we would look at each other and be like… ‘did he just say that?’ And it would be funny because he didn’t talk all the time you know?”

Brown, an NBA champion with the Houston Rockets, says that he remembered the late great was very serious about his craft.

There was something different about him.

“He was a very hard worker,” he said.

“I can remember one time he sprained his knee, or something like that. He was supposed to be out for a couple of months, but he ended up doing so much extra work, that he was only out for a couple of weeks. He came back, he had a brace on his leg and he was ready to go.”  

Petro’s midrange jumper was unguardable and his passing skills were quite efficient.

He could run the break like nobody’s business. As a Net, he was tossing no-looks at the Meadowlands Arena way before Jason Kidd was!

Nicknamed “The Croatian Mozart,” Petrovic’s gift and passion on the court was truly art.



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