The blood spilled, sweat dripped and tears shed by every athlete en route to making it to the pros is a story as old as the NBA itself. A young LeBron James alone on the blacktop, hours after practice ended, working and working to get his footwork down pat. A wiry, overlooked Stephen Curry putting up three after three in the hope of proving the scouts wrong.
What’s less often discussed is the spate of sacrifices made by each family that has a hardwood prodigy on its hands. The hours they logged taking their young players to practices, tournaments and trainers. The things in their own lives that were canceled and crossed out in order to be in the stands as their children hit the clutch shot, grabbed the big board or just warmed the bench, waiting for their chance to pounce.
Ask the likes of James or Curry, though, and they’ll tell you that they would never have seen the bright lights of the NBA had it not been for the strength and support of their relatives -- and, particularly, of their mothers.
So in honor of Mother’s Day this Sunday, here are seven on-court superstars who believe we should celebrate our mother figures every single day of the year.