Thank you, Mom: Former Kentucky stars Malik Monk, Bam Adebayo use NBA riches to repay motherly sacrifices
LEXINGTON, Ky. — As newly minted NBA lottery picks, Malik Monk and Bam Adebayo figure to make about $30 million between them over the next four years. The two former Kentucky basketball stars wasted no time sharing that wealth with their beloved mothers.
“I did the normal thing that kids will do for their mom,” said Monk, who was back in Lexington for a youth camp Wednesday. “I bought my mom a car and a house.”
Adebayo decided to play it coy.
“I took my mom to Cheesecake Factory,” he said. “I mean, she didn’t really want nothing, so I took her out to eat. My mom doesn’t drive, so I couldn’t buy her a car.”
Eventually, he revealed that his mother will be moving to Miami with him — he was drafted 14th overall by the Heat — and living on the fifth floor of a condominium building where he’ll live on the 46th floor.
“She doesn’t like heights,” Adebayo said.
Monk gave his former teammate and still good friend a hard time for his roundabout responses.
“All you had to say is, ‘I bought her a house,’ but you had to be different,” Monk joked. “But that’s not true,” Adebayo replied. “Who’s paying for the house?” Monk shot back. “All right,” Adebayo finally conceded, “I bought her a condo.”
While their exchange was light-hearted, the love both Adebayo and Monk have for their mothers is deep. They each talked last season about looking forward to a day they could repay great sacrifices their mothers had made to help them chase big dreams.
“It’s indescribable,” Adebayo said, “just being able to tell your mom you don’t have to work anymore. She can sit back and just relax and you can buy her whatever she needs.”
Added Monk: “We’re basically in the same boat, single moms, been with our mom our whole life.”
He hated being all the way out in California, then, when the new car was delivered to his mother back home in Arkansas. His phone rang and Monk didn’t need to be there to know what the gift meant.
“She said she wasn’t crying,” he said, “but I heard her.”