NBA star and former BYU basketball star Jimmer Fredette was chosen as one of the 30 professional basketball stars to be featured in a new video series, "The Crossovers," by Sprint.
The series just launched this week, and Fredette was one of the first highlighted. The purpose behind the project is to take fans "beyond the game" and help them see how their favorite players live off the court.
Fredette began the video by talking about his childhood dream of becoming an NBA star and how this dream was often laughed at.
"I was like, 'I wanna play in the NBA,' and the one kid just sat there and just laughed at me. And I always remember that experience because now I'm like, 'Hey, I made it,’ ” Fredette said in the video.
"I was able to overcome that, and I didn't care what anybody else thought. I had a goal in mind and a dream, and I worked as hard as I possibly could and was eventually able to make it. And I think that's because I had that focus and that drive and never thought that I was going to fail."
But success didn't come naturally, Fredette explained. Ever since he was a kid, Fredette has put in long hours of practice with his trainer, his uncle Lee Taft.
"He's been my personal trainer ever since I was really young, and he still is today," Fredette said. "I don't think, without him and without training, that I would be here today."
Throughout his basketball career, Fredette has encountered challenges, and he relies on his wife, Whitney, and his dog, George, to pull through.
"Sometimes you don't have great days. You're going to have ups, and you're going to have downs. And when you have the downs, it's awesome to be able to come home to a wife that's extremely supportive and a dog that loves you no matter what," Fredette said.
"Everything is put into perspective about what life is truly about, and it's about family and about having great relationships, and everything else is secondary to that, really."
Fredette also opened up about his interest in playing tennis. Although Fredette admitted to being new to the sport, he explained that both of his parents were very competitive and that it is something he plans to enjoy.
"Tennis I'm not very good at yet, but I've played and I've learned, and I've taken lessons and now I'm getting a lot better. It gets your competitive juices flowing, and it's something that I want to continue to get better at," Fredette said.
"My whole family has been into it. As I've got older, I've learned to love it a lot more, and it's something I can really do to help me with my strength and conditioning for basketball. It's great for your quickness and your speed, stopping and starting, so it helps me, and it's something that's really fun."
In a recent interview with Normons, Fredette spoke about his beliefs as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the role his dad played in his conversion.
"As I’ve grown older, my testimony has grown a lot, and a lot of it really has to do with my dad," Fredette told Normons. "He’s been a good example to me. That’s really where my testimony started, in just seeing how spiritual and what a good guy he is. I wanted to grow up and be like that."
Copyright 2017, Deseret News Publishing Company