|Full name||Victor Kenneth Braden Jr.|
|Country (sports)||United States|
|Born||August 2, 1929|
|Died||October 6, 2014 (aged 85)|
Trabuco Canyon, California
|Height||5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)|
Victor Kenneth Braden Jr. (August 2, 1929 – October 6, 2014) was an American tennis player, instructor and television broadcaster for the sport. He earned a PhD in psychology and was married twice. He had 5 children and 4 grandchildren.
Braden was one of eight children born to Victor (1904-1973) and Mildred (née Mayes) Braden (1906-1968), both natives of Claiborne County, Tennessee.
Introduced to tennis at age 12, he became good enough to earn three Michigan state high school championships, a scholarship to Kalamazoo College, invites to play in River Forest, Illinois and in Milwaukee. He told Sports Illustrated in a 1976 interview that he once hitchhiked to Detroit to watch Don Budge play Bobby Riggs, because he wanted to learn how Budge hit his backhand.
Braden graduated from Kalamazoo College, where he was Captain of the Tennis Team, and won the MIAA Conference Singles Title. He married a model, Joan, upon graduation. He was awarded an honorary doctorate degree by his alma mater in 2008.
Vic Braden died of a heart attack on October 6, 2014 at the age of 85. He was married for many years to his 2nd wife, Melody.
Braden became a tennis professional after graduating from Kalamazoo College in 1951. While serving as Assistant Basketball Coach at the University of Toledo. Harold Tenney hired him to become the Head Tennis Professional at the Toledo Tennis Club. Besides teaching, he joined the pro tour and played against Jimmy Evert (father of Chris Evert) and George Richey (father of Cliff and Nancy Richey). He moved to California in 1956 and obtained a master's degree and PHD in Psychology from California State University-Northridge and then UCLA. Braden joined Jack Kramer's pro tour in 1959. In 1961, he and Kramer started the Jack Kramer Tennis Club in Palos Verdes, CA where Braden helped direct construction and sell memberships to the club and then served as the Head Tennis Professional. He started Tracy Austin in tennis, and developed his "Tennis College" concept. In 1986, Kramer said, "One Vic Braden is worth a lot of Champions in helping promote the sport. The McEnroes, Borgs, Connors, they've been great. But I don't think any one of them has created the interest in the sport that Vic has." Braden was a patient and good friend of Dr. Toby Freedman, who was prominent in Space and Sports Medicine at North American Aviation and Kerlan-Jobe Orthopedic Clinic, and was an avid Tennis Player.
Licensed psychologist (California), author, sports educator and researcher, cinematographer, videographer, sports, television commentator.
He has authored five books with Bill Bruns whom he met in 1973.
Braden hosted the short-lived television series, Vic's Vacant Lot, which ran in the early 1980s on ESPN and Nickelodeon. The premise was to send Braden out with a group of children to show them how to organize competitive sports.