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Steven Adams: My Life, My Fight by Steven Adams with Madeleine Chapman

Seven foot tall Oklahoma City Thunder centre, Steven Adams shares his meteoric rise from humble beginnings to NBA stardom.

The youngest of 14 children, Steven grew up in Rotorua with his father and three siblings. Just 13 years old when his father died, Steven says he didn't have any fight, until he was asked if he wanted to play basketball?

'I didn't pay any attention to the NBA, or even local basketball, I knew that professional basketball players got paid a lot of money. And if there was one thing that was going to motivate me to pursue a career in something it would be the money, because not having enough was the cause of all the arguments I'd heard between my dad and siblings.'

His brother enrolled him in a basketball academy in Wellington and he soon found his fight.

"I knew I wanted to do something, but I didn't know what that thing was. And if a purpose hadn't come along soon I would have started looking for something, anything to feel a high."

For several years, Steven trained relentlessly and overcame numerous obstacles along the way. In 2013, he became a top prospect in the NBA draft, known for his physical, aggressive style of play.

After securing a four year, $100 million NBA contract, Steven is New Zealand's highest paid sportsperson ever. Steven says his career has been a steep learning curve, including managing injuries and dealing with fame. In the off-season he runs basketball camps for kids working towards their own dreams.

"Right now, I'm happy. I have a dream job where I get to do what I love every day. But the main reason I'm happy is because I have my fight. My fight is what I call my need to be better all the time. At the moment, my fight is basketball. Every day I wake up and want to be better at basketball. My fight is what keeps me alive."

Until now, I have had zero interest in basketball, but Steven Adams story is riveting! Co-writer Madeleine Chapman expertly captures Steven's incredible story. She explores his drive, defining moments and what basketball means to him. After speaking to family and friends she says it is clear that 15 year old Steven, with no money or fame is the same Steven with a $100 million contract. Madeline first met Steven when they were both teenagers playing basketball. She writes online for The Spinoff and this is her first book.

Reviewer: Andrea Molloy Penguin, RRP $40.00