Washington Wizards’ guard John Wall let the world know Friday exactly how much his mother, Frances Pulley, played a role in helping him became one the NBA’s top players.

The 27-year-old was inducted into the University of Kentucky Athletics Hall of Fame, and after thanking his coaches, teammates and friends, he asked his mom stand up to be recognized.

That’s when Wall got teary and talked about how much she sacrificed for him growing up, including not playing the electric bill just so he could play basketball.

“I just wanted to say thank you for being my mom. I know it was tough growing up with me and my two sisters, seeing my dad go to jail at a young age, and you sacrificing everything,” he said. “I seen you taking me to school and picking me up from school. I always wondered what it’d be like to be able to do things with my mom. I never had the chance….

“I know you used to hate when I was in kindergarten. You had to sit in the parking lot a lot of times because I could never stay in school more than 30 minutes. I was always getting kicked out, and she had to drive 45 minutes to take me to school. Then all of a sudden, I started playing youth basketball and I met one of my close friends EJ, we would call him Grizzly, and she would miss a lot of tournaments, but she would sacrifice sometimes not playing the light bill so I could go play basketball. Then, when I was 16 years old, I kept getting in trouble. She took basketball away from me. She said, ‘You can go down the same road as your dad and your brothers, or you can be somebody very special, and change our family’s lives.'”

Here’s the tribute:



Following the event, Kentucky head coach John Calipari tweeted, “So proud of ‘s Hall of Fame speech tonight. It made me cry!”

Wall played one year at Kentucky, and then went on to become the No. 1 overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft. He’s the first men’s basketball player to be inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame after only playing a single season.

Way to change your family’s life, John Wall.