If Zach LaVine decides to stop playing his favorite sport today, history will remember him as a former Washington Mr. Basketball Honoree, a member of the second NBA All-Rookie Team, and a two-time champion of the slam-dunk competition. Read on to learn more about the Minnesota Timberwolves’ 13th overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft, currently a member of the Chicago Bulls.
Early Life And Education
LaVine was born Zachary LaVine on March 10, 1995, in Renton, Washington. At a very young age, after seeing Michael Jordan in Space Jam (1996), LaVine wanted to become a basketball player. It also helped that his parents were both athletes in their prime, which meant he had the genes to make his dream come true.
Zach Lavine practiced the game day in, day out in the backyard of his family, modeling his game after his idol, then star player of the Los Angeles Lakers, Kobe Bryant. He then attended Bothell High School, where he achieved an average of 28.5 points as a high school graduate. 3.4 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game to be named “Washington Mr. Basketball 2013”, “Washington State Player of the Year” by the Associated Press, and “Parade All-American” first-team selection in 2013.
Before graduating from high school, LaVine had made an oral commitment to attend the University of California, Los Angeles, to play for the Bruins. He later considered going elsewhere after the school made changes in the coaching staff, but he kept his promise. In his freshman year, LaVine was the sixth man on the team, as he made comparisons between himself and former Bruins point man Russell Westbrook due to his explosive playing style and dunking style. He averaged 9.4 points per game and was called up to the Pac-12 All-Freshman Team, before which he revealed that he would be entering the NBA Draft in 2014 and would be giving up his three remaining college years.
Career And Injury Stats
On convocation day, the Minnesota Timberwolves selected Zach LaVine with the 13th overall selection and placed him under the tutelage of Ricky Rubio and Mo Williams. LaVine didn’t get much play in the early days of his NBA career due to the senior point guards on the team. However, after Rubio suffered an injury that left him on the sidelines indefinitely, LaVine secured a starting place ahead of Williams, although the two later shared the job until Rubio returned. During the All-Star break this season, he became the youngest person since his childhood idol to win the Slam Dunk competition, as he also participated in the Rising Stars Challenge. LaVine achieved an average of 10.1 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 3.6 assists in 77 games to earn a place on the second All-NBA Rookie Team.
In his second season, LaVine retained the Slam Dunk trophy, becoming only the fourth player to win the trophy on consecutive occasions. He also increased his point average to 14.0 points per game in 82 games. In his third year in the NBA, LaVine averaged 18.9 points per game until he suffered a knee injury at the end of the season in February 2017. A magnetic resonance tomography showed that the player had torn a cruciate ligament in his left knee, which required reconstructive surgery. During his rehabilitation, LaVine was transferred to the Chicago Bulls. He spent a total of 11 months on the sidelines before returning in January 2018.
Who Are Zach LaVine’s Parents?
As mentioned earlier, Zach LaVine’s parents were athletes. His father, Paul, was an American football player who was a linebacker, notably in the National Football League (NFL) for the Seattle Seahawks and the United States Football League (USFL). After retiring from the sport, he became a professional softball player, a sport that Zach’s mother, Cheryl Johnson-LaVine, ran professionally.
During the formative years of LaVine, his father played both the role of coach and training partner. He was responsible for teaching his son the non-physical side of the game such as mental strength and overcoming poor form and injuries.
Zach LaVine has been with a girl since his school days. The former student at UCLA is in a relationship with former soccer player Hunter Mar from the University of Seattle. The couple is said to have met in the Washington area, where they both grew up, although they did not attend the same high school. They have been inseparable since that time, as Mar is always imagined to be supporting her husband in his games.
Height, Weight, And Quick Facts
Birth Name: Zachary LaVine
Date of Birth: March 10, 1995
Place of Birth: Renton, Washington
Height: 6 feet 5 inches (1.96 m)
Weight: 185 lb (84 kg)