Matthew Dellavedova (born 8 September 1990) is an Australian professional basketball player for the Milwaukee Bucks of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played college basketball for Saint Mary's College of California and has played on the Australia national team. Dellavedova won an NBA championship with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016.
Born and raised in Maryborough, Victoria, Dellavedova is the oldest of three children in his family, and is a sixth-generation Italian Australian. His father, Mark, grew up playing Australian rules football and his mother, Leanne, played netball. Dellavedova began playing basketball at the age of four. He attended Maryborough Regional College and played junior basketball for the Maryborough Blazers and played in under-12 and under-14 Bendigo Braves squads. Along with basketball, he played Australian rules football at the junior level. He played the position of wing and kicked a total of 32 goals in 26 games between 1999 and 2001, but gave the game away to focus solely on basketball. Despite giving the game away at a young age, he is an avid supporter of the Collingwood Magpies in the Australian Football League. Throughout his teenage years, he was selected for several Victorian state representative basketball sides and played alongside future Collingwood captain, Scott Pendlebury. In 2007, he moved to Canberra to attend the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) where he spent three years playing in the South East Australian Basketball League (SEABL). Both of Dellavedova's sisters play basketball as well, with his younger sister, Yana, playing at the college level for Long Beach State University in 2012–13.
Dellavedova was recruited by Saint Mary's College of California in 2009 and signed with the Gaels before the 2009–10 season. He was ranked one of the top junior players in Australia; ESPN.com rated Dellavedova as the #73 shooting guard recruit for the 2008–09 recruiting season. Dellavedova immediately contributed for the Gaels and started each of the first 15 games of the season for the team. In 2009–10, he averaged 12.1 points, 3.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game.
On 16 January 2013, Dellavedova scored 18 points, including a game-winning three-point buzzer-beater, in a 70–69 victory over the BYU Cougars. In 2012–13, Dellavedova was an Academic All-America selection and a Senior CLASS Award finalist.
Dellavedova finished his college career as Saint Mary's all-time leader in scoring, assists, games played, free throw percentage and three-point shots.
St. Mary's retired his jersey on 15 February 2014. Dellavedova's #4 was the second retired by the school's men's basketball program.
Cleveland Cavaliers (2013–2016)
After going undrafted in the 2013 NBA draft, Dellavedova joined the Cleveland Cavaliers for the 2013 NBA Summer League. On 12 September 2013, he signed a two-year, $1.3 million contract with the Cavaliers. On 26 March 2014, he had a season-best game with 21 points and 6 assists in a 97–96 win over the Detroit Pistons.
In July 2014, Dellavedova re-joined the Cavaliers for the 2014 NBA Summer League. On 9 November 2014, he was ruled out for four to six weeks with a sprained left knee (MCL) that he sustained in the fourth quarter of Cleveland's loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on 4 November. On 8 December 2014, he returned from injury to face the Brooklyn Nets.
On 11 February 2015, Dellavedova was selected to participate in the Rising Stars Challenge as part of the 2015 NBA All-Star weekend. On 14 May 2015, Dellavedova scored a team-high 19 points to help the Cavaliers defeat the Chicago Bulls and advance to the Conference Finals for the first time since 2009. Following the Cavaliers' Game 3 win over the Atlanta Hawks in Eastern Conference Finals, Dellavedova's aggressive play became a major talking point with some describing him as a "dirty" player. Despite this criticism, teammate LeBron James and NBA great Charles Barkley both defended Dellavedova's play style. In Game 3 of the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors, Dellavedova scored a playoff career-high 20 points in the absence of the injured Kyrie Irving as the Cavaliers defeated the Warriors to take a 2–1 series lead. The Cavaliers went on to lose the last three games of the series as Dellavedova shot just 19% from the field in those three games.
On 27 July 2015, Dellavedova re-signed with the Cavaliers. On 19 November 2015, he recorded 7 points and a career-high 13 assists in a 115–100 win over the Milwaukee Bucks. Four days later, he had a season-best game starting in place of injured guards Kyrie Irving and Mo Williams. In just under 24 minutes of action, he recorded 15 points and 9 assists in a 117–103 win over the Orlando Magic. On 20 December, he scored a season-high 20 points on 7-of-10 shooting in a 108–86 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. In January 2016, Dellavedova was voted the "dirtiest player in the NBA" in a poll of 24 fellow players, coaches and assistants conducted by the Los Angeles Times, receiving 13 votes (appearing on the ballot of more than half of those that voted). On 18 February, he returned to the line-up after missing five straight games with a strained hamstring. Dellavedova went on to help the Cavaliers defeat the Toronto Raptors on 27 May in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals. The 4–2 series win advanced the Cavaliers to their second straight NBA Finals. In a Finals rematch with the Warriors, the Cavaliers became the first team in NBA history to win the championship after being down 3–1 in the series.
Milwaukee Bucks (2016–present)
On 7 July 2016, Dellavedova was acquired by the Milwaukee Bucks in a sign-and-trade deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers, in which Cleveland received a $4.8 million trade exception and the rights to Albert Miralles, while Milwaukee also received cash considerations.
NBA career statistics
|GP||Games played||GS||Games started||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field goal percentage||3P%||3-point field goal percentage||FT%||Free throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game||SPG||Steals per game|
|BPG||Blocks per game||PPG||Points per game||Bold||Career high|
|†||Denotes seasons in which Dellavedova won an NBA championship|
Dellavedova competed for the Australian junior national team at the 2009 FIBA Under-19 World Championship. He was the team's third leading scorer – averaging 10.1 points per game – for the fourth-place Australians. He was named in the Australian senior national team, the Boomers, to compete for the first time at the 2009 FIBA Oceania Championship. At age 19, he was the youngest Australian player at the competition. He went on to compete for the Boomers at the 2012 London Olympics, 2014 World Cup in Spain, and the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Dellavedova and his girlfriend, Anna Schroeder, got engaged on 10 September 2016. Dellavedova met Schroeder at Saint Mary's, where she played volleyball and was an honor roll student. They started dating after his senior year. Dellavedova is good friends with his former Cavaliers teammate, Joe Harris.
Off the court
On 28 March 2015, Dellavedova escorted Jackie Custer, a 17-year-old cancer patient, to the Akron Children's Hospital's "A Prom to Remember" event. Custer was asked to choose a celebrity guest to escort her to the event, and chose Dellavedova. Custer stated, "Going to prom with Delly was a night I'll never forget. It was definitely magical, and he's the sweetest guy I've ever met."