How many branches can boast the phrase "European Cup for Tel Aviv"? (Photo: Government Press Office, Sa'ar Ya'akov)
Israel is seen by many as a "soccer country", but everyone knows what the most successful football branch is, which team is more appreciated in Europe, where more trophies came from and who really put us "on the map".
Over the years, Israeli basketball not only sent us to celebrate in the squares, but also produced beloved athletes who won hearts and will forever be etched in the history books.
In honor of the festive project of Walla!
In collaboration with Toto, which marks 75 years of love for Israeli sports, it's time to choose: who are the most beloved athletes in the history of the State of Israel?
To choose the 75 favorite sportsmen and women in the history of Israeli sports, click here.
The first on the list, it seems, is
, the ultimate winner.
He won 16 championships and 13 state cups, and conquered almost every possible summit.
He won with Maccabi Tel Aviv the first European Championship in its history in 1977, when an entire country held its breath, and jumped into the pool in the square.
He added another European Championship in 1981 with a winning basket.
He was the standout of the 1979 European Team Championship when he led the Israeli team to a historic final.
He entered the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2017. He lit a beacon on Independence Day. He is the beautiful Israel, he is M.I.K.I.
An unforgettable moment, an unforgettable magician.
Gordon (photo: Walla! system, official website)
But is he the favorite of all?
could have played in the NBA but chose to fulfill the Zionist dream and immigrate to Israel.
Later, in the uniform of Maccabi Tel Aviv, he had a dramatic impact on sports, on basketball and in general on the country in general, and to this day his famous sentence "We are on the map" serves as a milestone in Israeli culture, a crossroads after which everything changed.
He led Maccabi Tel Aviv to the first European Championship in its history in 1977, and as a reward he won the Israel Prize in 1979, but he is much more than that: Tal Brody is an icon. But there were several other princes
and kings of Israeli basketball who moved us all over the years.
, for example, he is the king of baskets of all time in the Premier League, the king of baskets of the Israeli national team, the player with the most appearances in the national team, and one of the outstanding scorers in the history of Europe.
According to all estimates, it is hard to believe that his records in Israel will ever be broken, because Jamchi has demonstrated rare quality and stability over more than 20 years, and it will take LeBron James here to break Abdul Jabbar's record.
Some would say that the favorite of all was
, who admittedly had a short career, too short, but during which he won the hearts of Maccabi Tel Aviv fans forever and ever, even when he beat them in the final of the European Championship.
Gave a feeling that he was smarter than everyone.
Tapiro (Photo: Barney Ardov)
The one who was adored and loved no less by basketball fans is
, the man who started his journey on the courts with a waving cap, and managed to become a smart player, a genius on the court, who becomes a star even without great physical data.
Tapiro always knew how to read the game, excel in the moments of truth, provide winning baskets and will forever be remembered as an elegant center.
It is no coincidence that in 2010 he was chosen by the league management as the player of the decade.
Basketball fans will never be able to forget the talent of
, who scored several baskets that entered the Pantheon, both in Hapoel Jerusalem and in the Israel national team.
It is true that in his time it was difficult for a player outside of Maccabi Tel Aviv to win titles, but Gordon won two State Cups, one of which was with a tremendous victory basket over Tom Chambers. And in general, when he was on the field there was a sense of magic, as if anything could happen, thanks to Being a frenetic shooter, oozing charisma. Above all, he is the man who put "there is love in me and it will win" into the lexicon, and for that alone his place in the history books is guaranteed.
Unforgettable nights, in front of stars from another world.
Money (Photo: GettyImages)
In this entire glorious list, there is one who may still prevail over all:
, the first Israeli in the NBA.
Some would say he is the best basketball player who has ever been here.
He is the first Israeli to be selected in the first round of the draft in 2009, and since then he has completed a decade in the best league in the world, including some unforgettable games, against the biggest stars in the world.
He showed tremendous consistency, finished two seasons averaging over 10 points, and gave us some sleepless nights that ended with great pride.
Now the question is whether
will be able to repeat his achievement.
Avdia made an entire country fall in love with him when he swept the reserve team twice in a row to win the European Championship.
He was then selected in the NBA draft (highest ever), and began a promising career in the USA. Many Israelis wake up in the morning and immediately take pride in the exploits of the talented and elegant Avdia, whose future is still ahead of him, but his place in our hearts is already guaranteed
Sports, in collaboration with Toto
75 years of Israeli sport