Ever since he was a wee boy mimicking Michael Jordan’s dunks in his driveway, Zach LaVine thought he could become an NBA player. His 3rd-grade teacher? Not so much.
The Bulls first-time All-Star appeared on the most recent episode of Showtime Basketball’s All the Smoke to talk about turning that hoop dream into a reality, and he shared a pretty awesome story about arguably his earliest hater.
“You know, everybody raises their hand in class: ‘What do you want to be Johnny? Susie? Zach, what do you want to be?’ And I said, ‘I want to be an NBA player.’ And she was like, ‘you should probably pick something more realistic.’ I’m in like 3rd grade, and I go home and tell my dad, and we go back up to the school – ‘don’t ever tell my son there is something he can’t do!’
His ass wanted me – when I got drafted – he wanted me to go back to my elementary school and talk to her. But, you know, I’m not that petty.”
Life Goal: Find someone who has your back like Mr. LaVine.
LaVine has never been shy about giving his pops a round of applause for molding him into the professional we see today, and it’s easy to understand why after hearing stories like the one above. The two clearly hold a very strong relationship, as LaVine spends every offseason in Washington grinding away with his old man at, what they refer to as, “The Compound” (a.k.a. an athlete’s paradise built right in his parents yard).
The entire 42-minute interview with Barnes and Jackson is a great way to learn a bit more about how LaVine became the player we see today, so give the full thing a watch if you have some time. After all, do you want to miss beautiful quotes like these?
“I just want to do my part to try to get the Bulls back on the map and get them back to that championship era, because Chicago sports is big, man. They really root for you, they go after you, and I accepted that challenge and I still do. It’s exciting. I’m very humbled to wear Chicago across my chest.”
Extend this man, already.
Watch the complete interview below: