John Wall was inducted into the University of Kentucky Athletics Hall of Fame on Friday, becoming the first player to be inducted under Wildcats head coach John Calipari. In his speech, Wall thanked everyone, including a crew he's dubbed "The Three Amigos": himself and fellow NBA stars DeMarcus "Boogie" Cousins and Eric Bledsoe. Wall calls their friendship "a bond that will never be broken."
At around the 4:35 mark, Wall saved his final acknowledgement for the most important person in his life—his mother, Frances Pulley. "I told her I wouldn’t cry, but it might get a little difficult tonight," he confessed. Almost immediately after making that declaration, the Wizards star guard started to break down. "I just wanted to say thank you for being my mom," Wall said. "I know it [was] tough growing up with me and my two sisters, seeing my dad go to jail at a young age and you sacrificing everything."
Wall recalled all the times when his mom would drive 45 minutes to take him to kindergarten only to stay in the parking lot "because I could never stay in school more than 30 minutes; I would always get kicked out." As a self-confessed hardheaded teenager, Wall started heading down the wrong path, so his mom threatened to take away the game of basketball from him, saying, "either you can go down the same road as your dad and your brothers, or you could be someone very special and change our family’s life."
Wall turned into someone very special, and changed the life of his family. But none of that would have been possible if it weren't for the extraordinary efforts of Frances Pulley. Check out the emotional video above.