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Mureşan was born in the district of Cluj in a poor family, and played college basketball at Cluj University in Romania. He played professionally in the French league with Élan Béarnais Pau-Orthez during the 1992-1993 season and was an instant hit with fans. The NBA took interest in him and he was drafted by the Washington Bullets in the 1993 NBA Draft. He played in the NBA from 1993 to 2000, showing signs of a promising career that was unfortunately derailed by injuries. He was named the NBA's Most Improved Player for the 1995-96 season after averaging 14.5 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2.26 blocks per game whilst making a career-high 58.4 percent of his field goals. Overall, he holds career averages of 9.8 points, 6.4 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 1.48 blocks per game and a .573 field goal percentage. He joined the New Jersey Nets for the final 31 games of his career. After retiring from the NBA, Mureşan returned to the French league for three more years before returning to settle in New Jersey with his family.
Outside of basketball, Mureşan has dabbled in acting, receiving good reviews playing the title character in 1998 film My Giant with co-star, comedian Billy Crystal. He also played a ventriloquist in Eminem's breakout video, "My Name Is", appeared in commercials for Snickers bars, and has always taken pride in his Romanian identity.
Name: Gheorghe Dumitru Muresan
Nickname: Ghitza (pronounced GEET-za) means "Little Gheorghe"
Origin: Triteni, Romania
Schools: Cluj (Romania) '93
Drafted: 1993, Second Round, 30th pick by the Washington Bullets
Languages: Romanian and English
Website: The Gheorghe Muresan Archive & InterBasket
Teams (jersey): Élan Béarnais Pau-Orthez, Washington Bullets (77), New Jersey Nets
Ibn Facts: Gheorghe Muresan and Manute Bol, both at 7 foot 7 inches, are the tallest players ever to play in the NBA. Gheorghe did not get his height from his parents. His father is 5'9" and his mother 5'7". A pituitary gland condition caused his unusual growth. Muresan started playing basketball at the age of 14. Arnold Schwarzenegger is one of his heroes. He wears a size 19 shoe. Gheorghe and his wife Liliana became the proud parents of George, their first child, on April 23rd, 1998. Gheorghe resides with his wife Liliana, his son George and their Great Dane "Lucky". From fingertip to fingertip, his wingspan measures 7'10". He played in France in 1992-93 before joining the NBA.
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