Last year more people watched the NBA Finals on TV than live in the state of Florida (about 20 million). So chances are this year you’ll find yourself watching the Warriors and the Cavaliers playing on one of the biggest stages in the world. While you may know the teams, the records on the table, and the stats of each player, you might not know that 5 of the players you’ll be watching have mentioned their faith multiple times.
Here are those 5 players in the Finals who profess Christ and a few things you probably didn’t know about them:
1. Stephen “Chef” Curry – Warriors
Steph Curry is probably the most outspoken believer on this list. Not only does Steph point to Christ in many interviews but he literally does it after almost every three he drains. Curry says he hits his chest to represent that his heart is God’s and he points to heaven to remind himself that he’s playing for Him.
His Dad, Dell, and his brother, Seth have both played in the NBA.
His wife Ayesha is an entrepreneur, actress, and a literal chef.
Photo credit: Mercury News, Marcus Thompson II
2. Lebron James – Cavaliers
The greatest player of our generation has spoken several times about having faith. LeBron has referenced his belief in Jesus in several interviews and reminded the media over twitter that he trusts the timing of “The Greater Man Upstairs”. Lebron certainly grew up learning about the Bible and he let’s us know every now and again that he does have faith. Is LeBron a Christian? That’s ultimately between him and Jesus, but we’re rooting for him – both on and off the court!
Photo credit: King James Gospel
Lebron was a stand out Wide Receiver throughout high school (and has teased the idea of quitting basketball and playing for the Cleveland Browns).
3. Kevin Durant – Warriors
You may know him by his scoring titles or just by “You the real MVP” memes. Durant has become a household name in the past few years. He joins Steph on this list as the second starter for the Warriors who is a believer. Durant sports a massive tattoo across the left side of his back that quotes a passage from the book of James – “Consider it pure joy, brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds…”
Durant grew 5 inches his junior year of high school.
He also won an MVP award, while playing for the Thunder.
Photo credit: Sporting News
4. Kyle Korver – Cavaliers
Kyle’s life and family could be described in two words: Christ & Basketball. His parents, uncles and all of his brothers played basketball and both his father and grandfather are pastors. This year, his youngest brother, Kirk, passed away at the age of 27. At his brother’s funeral, Kyle gave a heartbreaking eulogy explaining that through their pain, they know that God will work everything out for good.
His mom once scored 73 points in a high school basketball game.
Photo credit: Waiting for Next Year
5. Andre Iguodola – Warriors
Both Kevin Durant and Andre talk about meeting in the team’s chapel before each game. I love this quote from him about representing Christ in the League: “When people see us on the court, we want them to see God’s work… you want to play hard for someone who died for you.”
He loves playing 2K and has actually played in legit video game tournaments.
Andre has been in the NBA for almost 15 years.
Photo credit: Sports Illustrated