The Courier-Mail

Bogut‘s play for fellow Aussie is fouled

- PETER MITCHELL

IF Andrew Bogut had got his way, Matthew Dellavedov­a would be wearing a Golden State Warriors singlet in the NBA finals, not playing against him with LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Bogut’s intriguing pursuit of the tough point guard from country Victoria happened around the 2013 NBA Draft.

Dellavedov­a was left sitting on the shelf, bypassed by all 30 NBA teams, and star centre Bogut, who arrived at the Warriors the year before in a controvers­ial multi-player trade, had a chat with Golden State general manager Bob Myers.

“I was trying to get him (Dellavedov­a) here actually, but we didn’t have a roster spot at the time,” Bogut said.

Bogut had a high opinion of the fellow Australian Institute of Sport product.

He had followed Dellavedov­a’s four-year stint at California’s St Mary’s College where the guard rewrote the record books in scoring, assists, games played, three-point shots, freethrow percentage and collected conference and Academic AllAmerica awards.

At the 2013 Draft, the Warriors went for Serbian guard Nemanja Nedovic.

Phoenix Suns drafted Nedovic with the 30th overall pick and that night traded him to the Warriors, but he ended up in their developmen­t league team, was waived last year and is now playing in Spain.

After the draft snub, Dellavedov­a accepted an NBA Summer League invitation from the Cavaliers and his hustling, blue-collar play became the perfect match for the workingcla­ss city of Cleveland.

“We had Nedovic and he was in the point guard spot for us,” Bogut recalled.

“I was trying to tell Bob to get him (Dellavedov­a) in.”

Bogut and Dellavedov­a will play key roles on opposing teams in the NBA finals.

Game One is in Oakland on Thursday (Friday AEST). AAP

 ??  ?? BLUE COLLAR: Cavalier Matthew Dellavedov­a.
BLUE COLLAR: Cavalier Matthew Dellavedov­a.

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