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Korean Hoops Star Dunks on Dream Team

Posted August. 19, 2006 03:02,   


In the match between Korea and the U.S. at the World Basketball Challenge (WBC) on August 15 at Jamsil Stadium, Seoul, it was almost as if the result was already decided in the game against the greatest star players of the U.S. National Basketball Association (NBA). The gap between the scores grew wider as time passed on, but the Korean players did their best until the last moment. Just before the match ended, Korea’s only dunk shot was made. Spectators sent heavy applause to the powerful two-hand dunk which looked as if it would break the rim. The person behind this shot was the rising hope for Korean basketball, Kim Min-soo (Age 24, Kyunghee University).

“My condition wasn’t so good that day because I was injured during the game. But I held through with the sprit that I have to try till the last moment,” said Kim. He is a two meter tall giant who moved around the basketball court with incredible speed and power, but Kim Min-soo up-close shows a pure-hearted young man.

Kim Min-Soo is “half-Korean,” born from an Argentinean father and a Korean mother. When he was young, his family was well off enough to own three cars, living a prosperous life. But when his father passed away due to heart disease eight years ago, the family’s financial situation began to face difficulties.

After graduating from high school, he received a proposal to play basketball in Korea from a person he knew, and he took a test at Kyunghee University in July 2002. Kim Min-soo traveled the long distance to Korea alone, and starting from 2003, he stayed at the dormitory and began to receive training from Kyunghee University’s coach, Choi Boo-young. The following year, he entered as a regular freshman, and in November that year he gained Korean nationality. His talent is continuing to improve, and at the National University Basketball Championship in June of this year, he was a three-time award winner, gaining the MVP award, the best scorer award, and the defense award, playing an important role in bringing Kyunghee University to the top of university basketball.

Kim Min-soo does not have a mobile phone. He does not have a girlfriend and is not interested in going on blind dates, either. His only interest is basketball. His goal is to gain recognition as soon as possible and play in the pros.

“I am the youngest child, so I was the object of my mother’s affection. My mother is still living a hard life in Argentina. Almost half of her hand was cut off while working at a butchers shop in April. When I heard about this during the middle of the challenge…, I wanted to run straight to my mother, but I had to restrain myself,” Kim said.

The reason he must go to the professionals is because of his love and wishes for his mother.