Rudy Gobert shares ‘painful memories’ from childhood in France

Rudy Gobert shares ‘painful memories’ from childhood in France

By Eurohoops Team/

Rudy Gobert shared some thoughts from his childhood to basketball and the NBA on Monday.

“I feel like people make their own stories about me without knowing much about who I am,” the French center of the Minnesota Timberwolves wrote in an emotional message through The Players’ Tribune.

Born in 1992 in Saint-Quentin, Gobert faced racism within his family.

“Before I was even conscious, when I was just a child coming into the world in Northern France, some people didn’t want me around because of who I am. And not just people. My own people. Very close family, actually,” he recalled.

“It’s a painful memory, but one that I need to share. You see, every year, my mom’s side of the family had this big Christmas dinner at a certain person’s house. My mom is white. My dad is Black. He’s from Guadeloupe, and he was playing basketball professionally in France when they met. My mom already had two white children from her previous relationship, and then I came into the world,” added Gobert.

Moving into focusing on developing his basketball skills en route to becoming a three-time NBA All-Star, he described putting posters in his room. “I would close my eyes and imagine myself on an NBA floor,” he wrote.

Following elimination in the first round of the 2023 NBA Playoffs, he spent three days in a darkness retreat in Southern Oregon.

“I left my home at 13 to be on this basketball journey, and until I went to the darkness retreat this past summer, I hadn’t ever zoomed out and appreciated the arc of my life like this,” he explained.

Read more on The Players’ Tribune.

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