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Steven Adams

Steven Funaki Adams (born 20 July 1993) is a New Zealand professional basketball player for the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). After playing one season with his hometown team Wellington Saints in 2011, Adams moved to the United States in 2012 to play college basketball for Pitt. In June 2013, he was selected by the Thunder with the 12th overall pick in the 2013 NBA draft. Early life Steven Adams was born in Rotorua, New Zealand, to a Tongan mother and an English father. His father, Sid Adams, served in the Royal Navy and later settled in New Zealand where he fathered 18 children with five women. Sid Adams stood 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) tall, and his children inherited his height: Steven Adams' brothers average 2.06 m (6 ft 9 in) tall, while his sisters average 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in). His half-sister, Valerie Adams, is a dual Olympic gold medalist and four-time world champion shotputter, while his brothers, Warren and Sid Jr., had careers in the New Zealand National Basketball League. Sid Adams was in his sixties when his youngest child Steven was born, and he died in 2006 of stomach cancer. Adams has identified his father's death as one of the defining events of his life. In a 2012 interview, Adams recalled: When I lost my dad, that was a big hit for me. I didn't have that parental guidance, and I kind of took advantage of it because I was a stupid idiot. I decided not to go to school a couple of times, go when I felt like it. I always lied to my brothers and sisters. They'd ask: 'Are you going to school?' I'd say 'yeah'. They eventually found out. After the death of his father, his brother Warren rescued him from the streets of Rotorua and brought him to Wellington. Warren began to take responsibility for Adams and introduced him to Wellington basketball legend Kenny McFadden. McFadden accepted Adams into his basketball academy, and Warren enrolled him in Scots College. The only rule McFadden had for Adams was that he had to attend school every day if he wanted to play basketball. While there was pressure for Adams to turn professional straight out of high school because it was believed he would never be able to qualify for the NCAA, Adams did well at Scots College and passed through the NCAA Clearinghouse after graduating from Scots in December 2011.


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