The 20 Best Foreign-Born Players in NBA History

11. Toni Kukoc

Country of origin: Croatia
Team(s): Bulls, 76ers, Hawks, Bucks
Career years: 1993-2006
Career stats: 846 G, 11.6 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 3.7 APG, 1.0 SPG
Accolades: 3x NBA Champion, 1x NBA Sixth Man of the Year, 1994 NBA All-Rookie Second Team

At 6'11" and with the skillset of a guard, Toni Kukoc was a perfect example of the kind of versatility European players brought to the NBA. After establishing himself as a star playing in Yugoslavia and Italy, Kukoc finally reported to the Chicago Bulls in 1993 after they used a second round pick on him in 1990. Beginning his NBA career at age 25 put the Croatian forward a bit behind his fellow rookies in terms of development, but playing alongside Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen certainly helped ease his learning curve. Over his first seven NBA seasons, Kukoc averaged 14 points per game over 30 minutes, performing well in both starting and sixth man roles as he helped the Bulls contend in the non-Jordan years and then, upon His Airness' return, on to their second three-peat.

blog comments powered by Disqus