KEVIN Love once more mentioned DeMar DeRozan as a force that helped spur him forward in the battle with anxiety as he received the Arthur Ashe Courage Award on Sunday (Monday, Manila time).
The five-time NBA All-Star has become a driving force in mental health advocacy after revealing his own mental health journey. DeRozan opened up about his anxiety and depression in 2018, months before Love spoke up.
“When I first shared my own personal story about mental health, I did not expect the incredible response that I received from my peers, from the league, and from sports fans all over the world,” Love said in a video acceptance speech for the ESPYS.
“I’d like to also personally thank my brother DeMar DeRozan who inspired me when he first shared his story.
“DeMar, I could not havedone this without you.”
“When I think about those I’m joining as an Ashe award recipient, ‘humbled’ does not even begin to describe the feeling. Billie Jean King, Muhammad Ali, Bill Russell. I’m not gonna try and do justice to all that these trailblazing icons have achieved, but I want to recognize and remind you that when they spoke up, they were not greeted with the warm reception that I was.
“They knew that change isn’t always pretty, but that history would be on their side.
“… I accept this award as both an honor and a challenge. A challenge to not only continue on my path, but to push beyond it and stay vocal even when silence feels safer.”
The award is named in honor of tennis legend Arthur Ashe.