20,000 Serbian Fans Captivate Stephen Curry, as He Pays Tribute to “Brate” Dejan Milojević

Published 01/24/2024, 1:40 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

The local team of Golden State Warriors’ late coach Dejan Milojevic, Partizan Belgrade displayed a heartwarming homage during a recent MIS Adriatic League game. The yells and clapping reflected memories of the beloved coach, creating a sorrowful yet celebratory environment. Looking at this tribute, even Warriors icon Stephen Curry was moved.

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He couldn’t resist and took to Instagram to share a clip of the tribute and posted a message for Milojević. Sharing the clip on his Instagram story, Curry wrote a caption saying, “Always our Brate Deki”. In Serbian, ‘Brate’ means ‘Brother’, and Deki was the late coach’s nickname.

The Golden State Warriors assistant coach, Dejan Milojević, passed away at the age of 46, unexpectedly during a team dinner in Salt Lake City, Utah on January 17, 2024, because of a heart attack. The franchise went into a mourning phase right after his demise, postponing two of their games last week.

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Milojevic was a Serbian native, not only a well-known coach but also a professional basketball player for Partizan Belgrade. The affinity between Milojevic and Partizan fans was clear when they devoted the first half of their MIS Adriatic League game to the late assistant coach.

The tremendous love Stephen Curry and Co have in their heart for the late coach was also evident on Wednesday, right before the Warriors match up against the Atlanta Hawks. GSW defeated the Haws, 134-112, marking their first game in 9 days. All the teammates wore black shirts to match up with the word “brate” written all across the front of their shirts. Through this tribute, the team also unveiled the new jersey patches that they’re going to be wearing for the entire season. the patch features a heart with Milojević’s initials inside.

Ahead of the game, Warriors coach, Steve Kerr also addressed the crowd by saying, “The world lost a beautiful soul last week. Deki was a wonderful friend, a hell of a basketball coach, a great man, and most importantly, a beautiful grandson, son, husband, and father. The mark that he’s left on our organization the last three years … that was him every day. The smile, the joy, the laughter, it was ever-present. What he meant to us was a huge part of who we are. He’s a part of our soul.”

After a moment of silence, honoring the late assistant coach, Kerr requested the crowd to give Milojević a standing ovation. After their pre-game tribute, the team took off their special jerseys and placed them on the chair that was reserved for him.

Coach Milojevic had a tremendous impact, leaving everyone emotional, including Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. The emotions of his peers and fans in Serbia can also not be ignored. After all, his influence was beyond the NBA. He shares a vivid history across the pond too.

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The history of Milojevic with Partizan and Mega

Dejan Milojević has a short history with Partizan as he played there from 2004 to 2006 before finishing his career with Pamesa Valencia. The arena was full of passion as Partizan faced Mega, which is a team linked to his coaching career, as it was the first team Milojevic ever coached. However, the game itself carried a special significance as Partizan emerged victorious and paid a heartfelt tribute to their former coach, Dejan Milojevic, who left a lasting impression on the basketball world.

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His latest team, the Golden State Warriors, alongside his hometown supporters from Serbia, made sure his legacy was honored in a way that reflected his deep impact on the sport. And as the basketball world mourns the passing of a beloved coach, the tributes serve as a reminder of the lasting bonds formed through a shared love of the sport.

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Watch this Story: “Gave Me Chills”: Klay Thompson Joins Stephen Curry and Other Warriors in Relishing Estranged Teammate’s Return

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Written by:

Dhruv Shastry

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