From Steph Curry’s father, Dell, teaching Steph to drain unreal three-balls the way Dell did when he starred in the NBA to Karl Towns Jr.’s father, Karl Sr., draining his savings to construct a basketball court for Karl Jr., dads have had an extensive history of directly impacting their sons’ on-court successes.
In honor of Father’s Day we caught up with a handful of elite players and had them share what they feel was the greatest impact their fathers have had on their basketball careers.
Trae Young, Oklahoma, PG, 2017
The greatest impact my dad has had on my hoops career was … “Just keeping me humble and keeping me working no matter what accolades I’ve received. He’s always pushed me to levels that not a lot of kids are pushed to. If it wasn’t for my dad I wouldn’t be here so I can’t thank him enough.”
Ja’Quaye James, Teaneck (Teaneck, N.J.), PG, 2018
The greatest impact my dad has had on my hoops career was … “Teaching me to approach basketball like it’s a business. Once I set my mind that this is what I wanted to do professionally, he said that I had to take a business-like approach to it at all times. That keeps me grinding and keeps me motivated. I appreciate that lesson.”
Ashton Hagans, Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.), PG, 2019
The greatest impact my dad has had on my hoops career was … “Teaching me that if he’s on me hard it’s because he doesn’t want me to follow the wrong footsteps. He always says to stay in the gym and keep working and not to let others get in my ear. He teaches me to be great. I appreciate that.”
Gary Trent Jr., Duke, SG, 2017
The greatest impact my dad has had on my hoops career wa s… “Preaching and harping about the importance of hard work in anything I do; whether it was in the classroom or on the basketball court, always put 110 percent into it whatever you have your mind set to do.”
Wendell Carter Jr., Duke, F, 2017
The greatest impact my dad has had on my hoops career was… “Motivating me. I remember the days we played one-on-one in the driveway and he used to punish me! Bump me, hit me, force me left, talk trash… I didn’t know what his point was in doing that when I was younger but now I realize that he meant no harm and was just trying to prepare me for the next levels. I really do appreciate my dad.”
Trevon Duval, Duke, PG, 2017
The greatest impact my dad has had on my hoops career was … “Everything. My dad is the reason I play basketball; he taught me everything I know on the court and he wasn’t just a great trainer he was also a great parent for me throughout my basketball career.”
Follow Jason Jordan on Twitter: @JayJayUSATODAY