2016-17 Team Profile: Cedevita Zagreb

Aug 22, 2016 by Eurocupbasketball.com Print
2016-17 Team Profile: Cedevita Zagreb

It was a successful and a memorable season for Cedevita Zagreb, a campaign that will forever have a place in club history for having reached the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Top 16 for the first time ever. Led by playmaker Jacob Pullen and big man Miro Bilan, Cedevita won three of its first four road games in the regular season, downing Anadolu Efes Istanbul, EA7 Emporio Armani Milan and Limoges CSP to take control of its own destiny and eventually secure a place in the next phase. Head coach Veljko Mrsic’s troops beat Darussafaka Dogus Istanbul and once again Efes for a 2-2 start in Group E. The team lost playoff hopes with a seven-game losing streak, before a strong finish that included a 30-point beating of eventual runner up Fenerbahce Istanbul and 21-point win over playoff-bound Crvena Zvezda that helped the team finish with a 4-10 record in the Top 16.


2015-16 Euroleague 8-16 Top 16
2014-15 Euroleague 3-7 Regular Season
2012-13 Euroleague 2-8 Regular Season
TOTAL: 13-31


2014-15 Eurocup 4-4 Eighthfinal
2013-14 Eurocup 8-8 Last 32
2011-12 Eurocup 1-5 Regular Season
2010-11 Eurocup 11-5 Semifinal
TOTAL: 24-22


Croatian powerhouse and three-time defending champion Cedevita was only founded in 1991 under the name KK Botinec. The team climbed to the second division in 1998 and reached the Croatian elite in 2002, but its ambitions rose when a big sponsor, Atlantic Grupa, took over in 2005 and the club changed its name to KK Cedevita. The team reached the Croatian League semifinals for the first time in the 2009-10 campaign and also finished seventh in its Adriatic League debut, however nobody expected what came next. Cedevita shocked everyone and did the unthinkable in the 2010-11 Eurocup when it survived a qualifying round, regular season and the Last 16 before knocking off Estudiantes in the quarterfinals to get to the Eurocup Finals. Unics Kazan halted its great run in the semifinals, but Cedevita had written a brilliant in its history. Dontaye Draper was named Eurocup MVP and Aco Petrovic Eurocup Coach of the Year for guiding the team on its fantastic run. Cedevita then reached its first Croatian League finals, but was swept by KK Zagreb. In 2011-12 Cedevita won its first-ever title – the Croatian Cup - behind the performance of veteran forward Matjaz Smodis. That same season the club reached the Adriatic League title game and the Croatian League finals, but Maccabi Tel Aviv and Cibona Zagreb, respectively, stood in its way. Domestic success led Cedevita to its Turkish Airlines Euroleague debut in 2012-13 season, which it finished with 2-8 record. That turned out to be a title-free season, but the last such for Cedevita. The next season was the first of two where the club reached the Adriatic League finals. Cedevita also celebrated a Croatian double – a historic success capped with a finals sweep of Cibona. In 2014-15, Cedevita returned to the Euroleague where it registered regular season road wins against Maccabi and ALBA Berlin, before continuing its journey in the Eurocup and reaching the eighthfinals, where it was ousted after two close games by eventual runner-up Herbalife Gran Canaria Las Palmas. At home, Cedevita lost the Adriatic League best-of-five final series against Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade, but took its second consecutive Croatian Cup and League double. Last season, while making history by reaching the Euroleague Top 16, Cedevita continued its dominance in Croatia, too. It lifted its fourth Cup in five seasons before sweeping through the Croatian League playoffs and ousting city rival Cibona in the finals for third year in a row and adding to its collection.

Trophy Case

Croatian National League: 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16
Croatian National Cup: 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016