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Crazy Against-All-Odds Stories About NBA Players

Making it into the NBA is not an easy task. A lot of players who do make it think of themselves as being blessed. But the path to success can be covered with thorns. Before becoming superstars, a lot of the players that we know and watch today needed to overcome the odds to make it.

Here are some crazy examples of current NBA players and their road to greatness

Jimmy Butler

Jacob Gaertner / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) – cropped

Butler is one of the most recognizable faces in the league today. His two-way playing style made him a legit superstar and has earned him the title of one of the hardest working men in the league.

But when he was young, he was abandoned by his father before he was ever born. To make things even worse, his mother decided to kick him out of the house at age 13. Jimmy lived at friends’ houses for some time until he finally settled with a nice family who already had six children.

But sports and basketball helped him as he went step by step to make it into the NBA. He was never seen as a star-recruit by any team he was on. He would often start slow but with hard work and dedication manage to prove his worth.

Giannis Antetokounmpo

The current MVP of the NBA league, the Greek Freak Giannis Antetokounmpo, grew up on the streets of Athens as an immigrant selling watches. One day he was spotted by a local coach who saw potential in his physical abilities. He invited him to try out for the team and promised that he would get his family members a job if he develops as a player.

Keith Allison / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

At first, Giannis was unable to dribble the ball nor make a lay-up as he liked playing football instead. But with hard work, he made it to the junior team and was quickly transferred to the senior team. He was spotted in the minor Greek league as all 30 NBA teams sent their scouts to see Giannis play live.

He was drafted by the Milwaukee Bucks that year and the rest is history.

Derrick Rose

Rose grew up without a father in Chicago’s South Side of Englewood. He barely made it out alive but had great support from his mother who didn’t want Derrick to end up selling drugs like many of the youth does. Instead, he turned to sport and had a great college career in Memphis where his playing style thrived. Eventually, we have selected as the number one pick at the 2008 NBA draft by the Chicago Bulls.

The Chicago native brought the excellent games to the Bulls and reached the greatest heights by winning the MVP award in 2011. However, it was then when injuries started to pile up.

Keith Allison from Owings Mills, USA / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

First, Rose tore his ACL in 2012, prompting him to miss an entire season. After coming back he managed two seasons with lackluster performances until tearing a meniscus in his other knee. Not being able to perform as expected, Rose eventually left the windy city and bounced from team to team.

Landing in Minnesota, being reunited with Tom Thibodeau, he got the opportunity he was waiting for. Rose slowly started going back to his old self again and even had a 50-point game against the Jazz that season.

Marking his return and allowing him to sign a contract with the Detroit Pistons.