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Rashad Vaughn Recalls Early Days In Minneapolis, Where Love Of Basketball Blossomed

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Just a four-hour drive from his hometown in Minneapolis, Rashad Vaughn is making a name for himself at the Milwaukee Bucks. The Robbinsdale Cooper High graduate was drafted in the first round after just one year in college.

He came home to the neighborhood where he grew up this week and decided to show Mike Max around.

Lincoln Park is where, to an extent, it all started for Vaughn -- his love for basketball. The neighborhood in North Minneapolis means so much to him because what happened here when he grew up boggles his mind.

It was at Robbinsdale Cooper that he started what's shaping up to be a long career in basketball.

"That was back when I was first coming up," he said. "I remember those days like it was yesterday. Y'all came up and interviewed me. It's just been a journey -- going from Cooper, to Findlay, to UNLV."

After a year in prep school, it was on to UNLV where he only played part of one season before he was injured. Still, he says he got what he needed.

"I had some of the best moments there," Vaughn said. "I had some of the greatest teammates, greatest coaches."

He made a big enough impression that on draft night, Milwaukee came calling.

"It's just an amazing feeling," Vaughn said. "It's something you can't really explain."

It's been a whirlwind -- he went for his basketball dream, and it was difficult.

"He's been through a lot, and I've just been blessed to have been around him and mentor him," family-friend Pete Kaffey said. "It was rewarding just to hear his name being called."

The kid two years removed from Robbinsdale Cooper is now a millionaire, and that's mind boggling for his family and friends.

"It still hasn't sunk in yet," Vaughn's father Troy said. "It was just a blessing, and a dream come true."

The kid has grown into a young man, with a major sense of responsibility to his community.

"I try to tell him, 'Don't forget where you come from. Let's try to give back,'" Kaffey said. "Let's focus on the goals you had when you were in high school."

That's why he says it's important to him to come back to Robbinsdale Cooper -- to remember who he is and what is expected. Because Vaughn has proven that it doesn't matter what court you grew up playing on. Dreams really are worth pursuing, because they might come true.

"Just waking up, coming to work out, coming to play with my cousins and brothers out here -- it's just been a whirlwind," Vaughn said.


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