Hawks’ Bogdan Bogdanovic makes special dedication after FIBA win

Atlanta Hawks, Bogdan Bogdanovic. (Photo by SHERWIN VARDELEON / AFP) (Photo by SHERWIN VARDELEON/AFP via Getty Images)
Atlanta Hawks, Bogdan Bogdanovic. (Photo by SHERWIN VARDELEON / AFP) (Photo by SHERWIN VARDELEON/AFP via Getty Images) /

Atlanta Hawks swingman Bogdan Bogdanovic is representing his country well. He earned Player of the Game honors for his effort in Serbia’s win over Lithuania in the 2023 FIBA World Cup.

For Lithuania, it’s a stark turn from the high of their upset win against Team USA.

It also knocks them out of the tournament. But Bogdanovic – who led all scorers with 21 points on 9-for-13 shooting, including 2-for-4 from beyond the arc – dedicated the victory to teammate Borisa Simanic who lost his kidney after taking an elbow during the waning moments of Serbia’s win over South Sudan on August 30.

“Borisa Simanic, he gave us amazing energy today,” Bogdanovic began his presser via FIBA on September 5. “In my young age, I was always losing to Lithuania. And I was so nervous. And I saw the message from Borisa in the morning, after the meeting – long meeting.

“He was like, ‘Guys, I’m good. Don’t worry. Let’s win tonight.”


Bogdanovic added four rebounds, three assists, and two steals with zero turnovers in 27 minutes.

Simanic underwent emergency surgery following the incident but experienced complications from the procedure, and his teammates certainly appreciated his sentiments.

“Due to changes in the vitality of the kidney tissue, the entire kidney had to be surgically removed,” said Prof. Dr. Dragan Radovanović, Serbia’s team physician, per KSS.rs on September 3. “We expect and wish that after this operation, the postoperative course will go smoothly.”


“For him just to think about us after everything that happened to him, he united us,” Bogdanovic said. “That’s an amazing guy, and this is for him as well.”

Serbia will face the winner of Canada versus Slovenia who face off on September 6.

“The game against the United States, as you can see now, it’s nothing,” Lithuania’s Tadas Sedekerskis said, per Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press via NBA.com on September 5. “It’s just history. We don’t have any chances to fight for the medal.”

Bogdan Bogdanovic Hawks’ last standing FIBA representative

Bogdanovic’s run is the last of a trio of Hawks in the tournament. Veteran Patty Mills was a star for Australia in the tournament, but the Boomers fell to Slovenia 91-80 on September 1. Mills had 17 points, eight rebounds, three assists, and one steal but it was not enough to stave off defeat.

Big man Bruno Fernando was doing his thing for Angola. But they fell to South Sudan 101-78 on September 1 with him logging zero minutes.

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Team USA avenged its loss to Lithuania by blowing out Italy 100-63 on September 5. Their next matchup will be against the winner of Germany versus Latvia who will face off on September 6