At 9 years old, Kris Dunn played 1-on-1 just to get money for food


Kris Dunn's story is one of perseverance.

The All-American point guard from Providence, drafted by the Timberwolves fifth overall on Thursday night, wasn't wearing Gucci shoes when he was growing up.

Instead Dunn, just 9 years old and in fourth grade at the time, was living alone with his older brother after their mom was incarcerated. They spent their days trying to avoid social services so they could stay together. Dunn spent 40 minutes on The Vertical podcast with NBA reporter Adrian Wojnarowski, and some of the stories he told are incredible.

"It was hard for us," Dunn explained to Wojnarwoski. "At that type of age you shouldn't have to go through that."

Just so he could eat, Dunn would go to the park and play kids one-on-one for money.

"I was playing older kids at the age of 15 and playing them for $20 and I wouldn't have the money in my pocket," Dunn said. "I had to win."

He also gambled to keep food on the table – black jack, poker, rummy.

"If anybody gambles they know those games," said Dunn, "but I was gambling. I would lose some games and I would pay that money. Some games I lost – I had to fight."

"We weren't doing it because we were bad kids. We were doing it because we had to."

Dunn and his brother went through that lifestyle until their father finally found them and helped give them a normal life.

"We'd go hungry sometimes. It was hard, I'm just glad we're out the situation."

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