Zaza Pachulia is a National Basketball Association (NBA) player who has played primarily for teams such as Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks and the Golden State Warriors.
Born in Georgia and working for the country nationally, the Turkish national won an NBA title in 2017, which earned him a Medal of Honor from his country’s President, Giorgi Margvelashvili.
Pachulia was born on 10 February 1984 in Tbilisi, Georgia SSR, in the Soviet Union as Zaur Pachulia to Marina and David Pachulia. He was introduced to basketball at a very early age because he was very big when he struggled to play other sports with his peers.
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At the age of thirteen, Pachulia was described as about six feet tall and eight inches tall. His size attracted the attention of many national and international basketball teams, who all wanted to give him the opportunity to play for them. At the age of fifteen, Pachulia changed his first name from Zaur to Zaza and moved to Turkey to play for the Turkish professional basketball team Ülkerspor, which had been exploring him extensively. He was already a member of the Georgian Junior National Basketball team and had led them to various tournaments.
Zaza Pachulia spent four years in Turkey and played a total of 73 games. During this time he scored an average of 6 points and 3.8 setbacks per game and won the Turkish National Championship in 2001, 2001, 2002 and 2003 and the Turkish Presidential Cup in 2003.
After his successes in Turkey, Pachulia was selected by Orlando Magic with the 42nd pick in the second round of the 2003 NBA draft. He was then selected in the 2004 expansion draft by the Charlotte Bobcats, who traded him into the Milwaukee Bucks, where he played a small role from the bench, with an average of 6.2 points and 5.1 setbacks in the 2004/05 season.
At the end of this season, he decided to move to the Atlanta Hawks, where he was given the opportunity to play as a starter. His statistics sheet improved dramatically when he scored an average of 11.7 points and 7.9 setbacks per game in 78 appearances. His offensive rebounding efforts, in particular, made him a force to be reckoned with as he was third in the NBA’s Rebounds per Match offensive.
Zaza Pachulia played with the Hawks from 2005 to 2013 and played in a total of 556 regular-season games and 40 off-season games as the Hawks reached the playoffs in 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011. Between his time with the Hawks, during the 2011 NBA lockout, Pachulia returned to Turkey to play for Galatasaray in the Turkish basketball league but returned to the Hawks after the end of the lockout.
After completing the 2012-13 season, he moved to Milwaukee to play for the Bucks. During his two-year spell there, he set a Bucks franchise record of 18 offensive rebounds in a match against the Brooklyn nets.
In 2015, the Bucks sent him to Dallas in a trade for a future design selection. Pachulia enjoyed personal success at the Mavericks when he surpassed his previous total number of double-doubles in one season. He also made his first All-Star appearance at the NBA All-Star Game 2016.
From Dallas, Zaza moved to the Golden State Warriors on July 2016. During this campaign, he was branded “Zaza Per Cheat Shot” by NBA analyst Skip Bayless for the injury to San Antonio Spurs player Kawhi Leonard, which in turn brought his team into the NBA final against the Cleveland Cavaliers who won them.
At the time, Pachulia had been described as a dirty player and villain in the league. He did his reputation no favors when he deliberately fell on the knee of Oklahoma City Thunder player Russell Westbrook to injure him.
Zaza Pachulia’s Salary and Net Worth
Zaza Pachulia currently has an annual contract for $3.5 million with the Golden State Warriors. However, he is said to have a net worth of around $13 million thanks to the salaries and endorsements he has received in all the years he has spent in the NBA.
In addition to his salaries, Pachulia is an entrepreneur and investor in a number of start-ups.
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Zaza Pachulia has been married to his wife Tika since 2008. Together the couple has two sons and one daughter. They are Davit Pachulia, Saba Pachulia, and Mariam Pachulia.
Height, Weight, Other Facts
Birth Name: Zaza Pachulia
Date of Birth: February 10, 1984
Place of Birth: Tbilisi, Georgian SSR, Soviet Union
Height: 6 feet 11 inches (211 cm)
Weight: 122 kg (270 lbs)
Birth Sign: Aquarius
Shoe Size: 17 US