10 Greatest Against All Odds Stories in the NBA Today (Part 1)

10 Greatest Against All Odds Stories in the NBA Today (Part 1)



players that make it to the NBA come from all across the world and everyone has different backgrounds and different stories for how they made it to the league some have had an easy path and some have been lucky to even make it to this point alive so we're gonna look at the ten greatest against all odds stories in the NBA today the players that shouldn't have made it to this point that shouldn't have been able to do what they have but through hard work and dedication turn their bad situations around into some of the greatest stories we've ever seen starting with number one Jimmy Butler from start to finish Jimmy's got one of the most compelling stories in the league and here's why because almost as soon as Jimmy was born his dad abandoned his family which left him with a single mom and that didn't last too long because when he was 13 years old his mom told him I don't like the look of you you gotta go and kicked him out of the house so he bounced around different friends houses and foster homes hoping to have a place to stay every night and it took him all the way up until the summer before his senior year of high school to find an actual home to stay at every night when he moved in with a freshman on the basketball team Jordan Leslie Leslie's mom already had six kids living in her home but they quickly accepted Jimmy into the family and through all of this sports and basketball specifically were the thing that kept him going by his senior year of high school he was averaging 20 points and eight rebounds a game and was as team's captain and later voted his team's MVP but still wasn't heavily recruited so he ended up going to Tyler Junior College where he played one season averaging 18 7 and 3 but was still only named a two-star recruit but it was enough for him to start gaining interest from d1 schools and he eventually got an athletic scholarship to Marquette where he started out slow I've seen five and three as a sophomore but through being one of the hardest-working players in college basketball his game developed every year the next season you would put up 14 and 6 and then as a senior averaged 15 and 6 including hitting two game winners and helped his team to the NCAA tournament which attracted the Chicago Bulls to selecting him 30th overall in the 2011 mph and the same thing happened he started out slow averaging only two points a game as a bench player in his rookie season but develop his game every single year and by his fourth year in the league he made it clear that he was a star player putting up over 20 points a game and making the all-star team as a member of the Chicago Bulls and today he continues living up to the reputation as being one of the best two-way players in the league and all of this has made his story be described as one of the most remarkable in the history of the league number 2 Steph Curry you might not have been expecting to see a player on this list whose dad played in the NBA and Steph story isn't as intense as some of the rest of these but it's still worth mentioning because he definitely has one of the better underdog stories but that really didn't start for him until he was in high school because as early as middle school his shot and his handles were already so good that one day his coach saw him warming up for a game and asked him if he could teach him some of those moves so he can use them in his mins legally – that night and because curry was so good so young he was leading his middle school team to being everyone by 40 or 50 and night so his coach started to make his team play high school teams instead and they won a lot of those games – thanks to stuff in this same insane level of skill translated over to high school basketball right away former NBA player Anthony Morrow grew up near Steph Curry so they played a lot of high school games against each other and Mauro said that he was just as skilled then as he is now and that every school had the same game plan for him which was to swarm Curry the second that he passed half-court because if you didn't it was over so the skill for curry was always there who would go on to be named all-conference all-state and lead his team to three state playoff appearances but no matter how great he was he was still said to have looked like a 14 year old as a senior that stood six foot tall was a hundred and sixty pounds and wasn't the best athlete so scouts still said he was too small which meant that he was only a three-star recruit and the big universities across the nation all passed on Steph Curry so he ended up going at Davidson where he instantly put together some of the greatest scoring and shooting performances in the history of college basketball averaging 25 points a game for his three years there and twenty-eight and five is a senior which led to him proving that even though he was small and not the most athletic he was still capable of playing the game at any level and was still taking seventh overall in the 2009 NBA Draft when nobody believed in him except a few select people he believed in himself and proved them all wrong and is still proving everyone wrong today having been the two-time MVP and becoming the greatest shooter of all time number three Yanis attending the Greek fre grew up in Athens Greece shocker but his family was poor so as a young kid he'd spent a lot of his time walking around the streets trying to sell watches and sunglasses just to help his family buy food that day in his free time though he loved to play soccer with his brothers and one day when he was 13 a basketball coach of one of the local clubs in Greece spotted him and invited him to play on the team and the coach saw huge potential in him right away because he told you honest that if he played he would find both of his parents jobs working with the team so without question he joined but up until this point he barely ever played basketball and his coach said that he couldn't make a layup or a drip of the ball and to even further show just how much potential this coach saw in Yanis he'd help his family with a long commute getting him back and forth to practice and even helped pay to move the family closer to the team and in a better neighborhood and through all of that he eventually fell in love with the game and practiced for hours every day and he'd quickly get better every year by the time he was 16 he was playing on this junior squad of a semi-pro team in Greece the next year is game really developed and he moved up to the senior team and this is where NBA scouts first to learn to be honest it was reported that all 30 NBA teams except for the Knicks great job New York went to go Scout him and watch him play which led to him entering the 2013 NBA Draft being picked 15th overall by the Bucks he'd gone from selling watches in the street and having never played basketball two four years later making it onto an NBA team none of this would have been possible without that coach that first discovered him and really got him on to playing basketball and Yanis never forgot where he came from because he's thanked that coach personally and said that he owes him his entire career and as a rookie all of his family was still overseas trying to get their papers worked out so everything sent that he made he sent over to them to try and help him out so much so that he had to run to an NBA game because he had no money left for a taxi and in that same season he spent the most money he had ever spent when he bought a PlayStation 4 but he said he couldn't stand the guilt that he was using that kind of money on a game well his family was back home struggling so he sold it to an assistant coach and sent them that money too and this humble mindset combined with his work ethic and his freak body or it's led him to becoming one of the league's top players in a top MVP candidate this year number four Isiah Thomas five-foot-nine Isiah Thomas has always been an elite level basketball player considering his size his basketball skill on the court has never been the question and has never been any part of what's held him back what has though has been the perception that everyone else has had for him that he was just too small to be successful at the next level except his dad who nicknamed a big head when he was born but seriously ideas never let that affect him as a junior in high school the man averaged over 31 points a game and they held a pretty similar pace the next year as a senior but that still only landed him as a three-star recruit and that was the first time in his eyes that people weren't gonna give him the credit that he deserved eventually he moved to the University of Washington where he'd attend for three seasons and in those three years he wasn't the biggest standout no pun intended but he averaged 16 and 4 was a two-time PAC tournament MVP and a two-time member of the first team All pac-10 before forgoing his senior season to enter the NBA Draft which was almost a mistake because as most of us know he was taken with the very last pick in the draft that year but that was probably the best thing that could have happened to him because through his entire career I t's use this as motivation to prove all the other 29 teams that passed on him that they made a mistake and that's exactly what he's done all Isiah ever needed was an opportunity and once he got it he ran with it and had a solid rookie season being in and out of the starting lineup he would average 11 and 4 and 25 minutes a game and surprise everyone and finished seventh and the Rookie of the Year voting over the years his game would slowly progressed and he would continue to try and find a consistent role as a starter and he finally did that when the Boston Celtics finally gave him the chance that he deserved in his first full season with the team he averaged 22 points and six assists a game before he really made a name for himself by averaging twenty nine and six on the year making the all-star game for the second year in a row and flat-out leading the Celtics deep into the playoffs before getting injured and since that injury is led I t's career to taking a turn for the worse but we can tell that he's working to get it back on track and he's working on against all odds proving everyone wrong and making it to be one of the top players in the league once again number five Damian Lillard today Dame is known as a clear top five or six point guard in the NBA but his journey to get to this point is even more impressive he's gotten to where he is today through dedication fearlessness and hard work Trey said he's had ever since he was a kid he grew up in one of the worst parts of Oakland and growing up there and seeing the things that he saw at a young age played a huge factor that he said have made him fearless in life and even more so on the court but since he was little before he was ever great at the game he would sit outside the doors of the local rec center and wait for the doors to open at 9:00 a.m. and usually stay until it got dark when all the other kids would go home to play video games Dame would still be in the gym watching grown men play while he practiced dribbling with his left hand and this work ethic carried on in middle school even back then his coaches described him as being as fearless and competitive as they've ever seen a kid at that age and Davis said that back in seventh grade was when he really started to care about wins and losses and trying to make it onto the national rankings so he could see who was better than him and try and make his name go up on the list every game but unfortunately even by the time he's entering the 11th grade he was still next to unheard of on a national level a Bay Area Scout even told him that he was good but not great and his AAU coach said that little is the type of guy that when he's doubted it builds a fire inside him that when he's told he's not gonna win the game that he's not good enough he's gonna do everything in his power to prove you wrong and that's when his coach pulled the lotus-eyed after practice one day and told them you don't play hard enough and you don't practice hard enough you got the potential to play big-time college ball but you can't even play for me and he said this knowing that it would light a fire inside Lillard like before and it definitely worked because Dame said that this turned out to be a huge moment in his life because after all the doubt he faced and people telling him he wasn't good enough and he wasn't gonna make it his coach telling him that he believed he had the potential to play in a big-time college let him know that he truly believed in him but then when he was a senior he got a bigger taste of just how bad his hometown was when he got confronted by three men while walking home after practice he stood tall ready to defend himself until one of them put a gun to his forehead you

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