Josef Paleček first represented Czechoslovakia as a 18 year old, helping them win the U19 IIHF European Junior Championships.
Paleček also played on the 1972 IIHF World Hockey championship team, the 1973 IIHF World Hockey Bronze Medal winners and the 1974 silver medal winners at the IIHF world championships.
Paleček won 2 Czechoslovak Extraliga championships with HC Dukla Jihlava in 1969 and 1970. Also in 1973 with TJ Tesla Pardubice.
Paleček turned to coaching full time after retiring. He coached or was assistant coach with TJ Stadion Hradec Kralove, TJ Tesla Pardubice, HC Pardubice, HC Pojišťovna IB Pardubice, HC IPB Pojišťovna Pardubice, Bili Tygri Liberec, HC Energie Karlovy Vary along with coaching the Czech National Team