Nigerian-American basketball star, Victor Oladipo, has said he would have become the ‘next Karate kid’ if he had taken to his father’s advice while growing up.
In an interview on Instagram with basketball analyst, Ros Gold-Onwude, the Indiana Pacers point and shooting guard said that his father wanted him to learn Karate so as ‘to have a sound mind in a sound body.’
Oladipo, who said he knew he was destined to play basketball at the highest level at age four, stated that his father, a PHD holder, was a little shaky about his love for basketball and wanted him to follow his footsteps.
He said: “Actually my dad was a little shaky about my decision to play basketball. My dad has a PHD and he kind of wanted me to follow in his footstep because as a father you want your son to do something similar to what you did.
“He didn’t really want me to play that much. He thought it was a hobby, he didn’t know I was really passionate about it. At a point he wanted me to go to China to do martial arts because he wanted me to have ‘a sound mind in a sound body. Those were his exact word.
“It might not have been bad to go to china but basketball was the love of my life and it was all I wanted to do ever since I was four years old. My mother kind of shot that down for a while but I ended up in Indiana University on basketball scholarship and I guess it turned out great,” the former Orlando Magic star added.
Selecting six players of African descent who could make a team and make it to the NBA finals, Oladipo picked Joel Embid, Pascal Siakam, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Dennis Schröder, himself and Bam Adebayor.
Oladipo said his parents always reminded him to apply common sense in all his dealings. “Common sense is not common to you people. Why is it that when I tell you to do one thing you do another? I use to get that a lot,” he added.