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Charlie Villanueva Biography
Charlie Villanueva is a first-generation Hispanic American, son of Dominican immigrants, Roberto Villanueva and Dora Mejia, born August 24, 1984 and raised in Queens, NY. Villanueva an NBA player who signed a 5-year contract with the Detroit Pistons, back in July 2009, was drafted at the age of 20, 7th overall (lottery selection) in the 2005 NBA Draft by the Toronto Raptors.
Charlie Villanueva, best known as “Charlie V.”, enjoyed a successful rookie season, averaging 13.0 points and 6.4 rebounds. He ranked second among all rookies in points and rebounds, and third in blocks and minutes. The 6’10” forward set Toronto franchise rookie single-game records for points (48) and rebounds (18).
His rookie campaign was further highlighted by an appearance in the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge at Houston All-Star Weekend, as well as NBA Rookie of the Month honors for the month of December 2005 and a spot on the All-NBA Rookie First Team.
He attended high school at Newtown in his hometown of Queens for his freshmen year, where he played with former NBA player Smush Parker, before transferring to Blair Academy in Blairstown, NJ during his sophomore year, where he played with fellow NBA player Luol Deng and earned McDonald’s High School All-American honors as a Senior, as well as New Jersey State Player of the Year. He entered the NBA Draft in 2003, but decided to withdraw his eligibility to attend college at the University of Connecticut.
In his first year at UConn, Villanueva was named to the Big East All-Rookie Team and was a member of the remarkable 2004 NCAA Men’s Basketball National Champions. This championship declared NCAA history as UConn became the only school to ever win both men’s and women’s tournament championship in the same season.
In the summer of 2004, Villanueva was a member of the gold medal-winning United States 21-and-under team at the World Championships. Villanueva attended the University of Connecticut for two seasons before becoming an early entry candidate for the 2005 NBA Draft.
Villanueva made the announcement during a press conference at Gampel Pavilion where he was joined by UConn Hall of Fame Head Coach Jim Calhoun. He was the Huskies leading scorer in his sophomore season, averaging 13.6 points and 8.3 rebounds receiving team MVP and 2nd Team All-Big East honors.
He played his best ball down the stretch in 2004-05, averaging 18.2 points and 9.7 rebounds over the final ten games of the season and averaging 19.0 points and 9.5 rebounds during the NCAA Tournament. Villanueva led the team with 12 double doubles on the year.
Villanueva is the eighth UConn player to declare early for the NBA Draft, joining Donyell Marshall (1994), Ray Allen (1996), Richard Hamilton (1999), Khalid El-Amin (2000), Caron Butler (2002), Ben Gordon (2004) and Emeka Okafor (2004).
Villanueva’s most notable professional highlight was recorded on the night of March 26, 2006, where he set a career high and Toronto Raptors franchise rookie record for points in a game with 48 versus the Milwaukee Bucks. The 48 points was the 4th highest performance ever by a NBA rookie.
He joins an elite class of athletes: Allen Iverson (50 pts – 1997), Michael Jordan (49 pts – 1985), & Kelly Tripucka (49pts – 1992). Villanueva was voted 2nd in the running for the 2005-06 Rookie of the Year award, finishing behind Chris Paul.
On June 30, 2006, Charlie Villanueva was traded by the Toronto Raptors to the Milwaukee Bucks. In his first year (2006-07), Villanueva appeared in 39 games, averaging 11.8 points and 5.8 rebounds in 25.2 minutes per game. He missed 43 games due to injuries, which he eventually underwent season-ending arthros surgery.
His second year was more productive. Villanueva appeared in 76 games, averaging 11.7 points and 6.1 rebounds. Tallied a season-high 38 points and 12 rebounds at Toronto (4/9/08). He grabbed 16 rebounds twice, tying the fourth-highest rebounding game by a Milwaukee Bucks’ player.
He also made a career-high seven three-pointers at Toronto (4/9/08). In his last year, Villanueva appeared in 78 games, averaging career-highs in points (16.2 ppg), rebounds (6.7 rpg), assists (1.8 apg) and free throw percentage (.838). He led the Bucks in scoring 19 times, rebounds a team-best 27 times and blocks a team-high 32 times.
Scored a season-high 36 points vs. Denver (2/22/09), connecting on 7-of-11 from three point range. Dished out a career-high six assists twice. And grabbed a season-high 15 rebounds vs. New Jersey (3/10/09). Villanueva completed his first NBA contract with Milwaukee and marked a prominent status as one of the most versatile and talented big men in the NBA.
On July 9, 2009, he joined the Detroit Pistons as a highly sought after free agent, signing a 5-year deal. In his first year with Detroit, Villanueva appeared in 78 games, averaging 11.9 points and 4.7 rebounds in 23.7 minutes per game.
He started the first 16 games of the season and averaged 15.6 points and 5.7 rebounds, before dealing with back spasms issues, which limited his minutes. He made a team-high 99 three-point field goals. Scored a season-high 30 points (season-high 13 field goals made) in 31 minutes vs. Charlotte (11/11/09).
His strong play and work ethic hope to be the keys to the Pistons once again joining the league’s playoff elite. In 2010-11, Villanueva appeared in 76 games averaging, 11.1 points and 3.9 rebounds. Scored a season-high 30 points (9-15 FG, 5-7 3FG) at L.A. Clippers (11/12/10).
His 125 three-point field goals made on the season ranked second in the NBA. Recorded a single-season career-high 323 three-point field goal attempts. He enjoyed the best month of the season in November 2010, where he recorded 13.5 points and 5.2 rebounds.
The following year, 2011-12, he appeared in career-low 13 games, averaging 7.0 points and 3.7 rebounds in 13.8 minutes per game. This misfortune was mainly due to a sore right ankle and other injuries. Villanueva looks to bounce back to provide a positive impact in the upcoming year.
In 2009, he switched sports nationality to the Dominican Republic. Under FIBA rules, he asked USA Basketball to release him in order to switch his sports citizenship. He played for the Dominican Republic national basketball team in the 2009 FIBA Americas Championship, where he led the team in points averaging 17.1 and added 7.4 rebounds per game.
Villanueva also participated in 2010 Centro Basket Championship, where he again led the team in points, averaging 20.6.
Charlie Villanueva Disease – Charlie Villanueva Hair
Villanueva has an autoimmune skin disease known as alopecia universalis, a variation of alopecia areata. This prevents the growth of hair on the scalp and/or elsewhere on the body, but otherwise is not physically painful, dangerous, or life-threatening.
Charlie Villanueva Wife
Charlie Villanueva proposed to his longtime girlfriend Michelle Game. Michelle posted pictures of the diamond ring on social media saying, “Last night I said yes to the love of my life. I couldn’t be happier to spend a lifetime with my best friend.” Michelle has a degree in psychology and is a cosmetologist. She has starred in music videos and has been featured in magazines.
Charlie Villanueva Kids
Villanueva has two children: CJ & Ayliah.
Charlie Villanueva Net Worth
Charlie Villanueva has an estimated net worth of $30 million.