With over 13 seasons under his belt, Middle East ball player Chudney Gray was first introduced to the game of basketball at age 6 and has been playing ever since. With many people in his life, including his father, keeping him focused and helping to achieve his goals, the road was not always easy for Gray.
Remembering his time as an underdog, Gray placed a lot of pressure on himself to play and do well; however, while attending St. John’s University, he was not given the same opportunities to play as other guys on his team, naming his college years as probably the toughest time he had to deal with. Using times such as this served as reminders for Gray to never take anything for granted. “In essence, those struggles helped me in the long run. It made me tougher, it made me a fighter. I look back and thank God for those times.”
Because obstacles are a part of life and can stand in the way of many dreams, most kids are scared to follow their dream, thinking they have to go to a big time school or that the NBA is their only option to play professionally. Understanding this, and recalling the ups and downs of his own career, Gray expressed his thoughts on how important it is for kids to have a positive and realistic outlet, also giving good advice for encouraging and guiding youth down the right path. “The youth are in fact the future and it’s important that they establish a strong foundation by believing in their goals and being patient in achieving those same goals. In order to follow your dreams, you have to give yourself the best chance. That means you have to apply yourself in whatever areas you intend to succeed in. Whatever is worth having is worth fighting for. This way of thinking allows you room to grow while adjusting to life’s peaks and valleys.”
Naturally driven, Gray has been able to pursue his dream and play for all these years because of his preparation and foresight. His motivation is and will always be life, doing whatever it takes to give his family the life that they deserve. “Strategically applying yourself, it all starts with a dream and going out to make that dream happen. You can never feel sorry for yourself because life won’t stop to ask if you’re okay. You have to always strive, learn and apply.”
When asked what Love the Game means to him, Gray responds, “It means passion. It’s being emotionally connected. It’s a special feeling that you get through the many experiences both on and off the court. It’s laughter, its tears. It’s the longstanding relationships that are formed through teamwork.”
Although he is still playing, Gray is already focusing on the next chapter in his life which is his company called “HOME COURT SECURITIES.” Still in its intermediate stages with hopes to launch the summer of 2013, the purpose is to serve as an infrastructure that mirrors a traditional social security plan/401k plan for international athletes. The company will be an umbrella that gives extra protection for all of the possible “what ifs” that may occur at any given time.
With a serious approach to life that mirrors that of himself on the court, Gray tries to enjoy every moment, taking in as much as he can. He has learned to smile through the pain and except things for what they are.
“In the big scheme of things, there’s life. There will always be struggle and there will always be obstacles. Everyone receives different opportunities and you should never count another person’s blessings as your misfortune. Things don’t always work out in our favor but it’s up to us to change the outcome. So, if you’re unhappy where you are, work, believe and be everlasting in your pursuit.” – Chudney E. Gray
Written by Erica Wright
Continue following Chudney by visiting his website ChudneyGray.com