December 02, 2023

Dennis Schroder fulfills vow, returns to his roots to celebrate FIBA World Cup title

Dennis Schroder fulfills vow, returns to his roots to celebrate FIBA World Cup title

FIBA World Cup champion and tournament MVP Dennis Schroder celebrated his birthday in epic style, returning to his hometown of Braunschweig with the trophy in tow.

On his 30th birthday, Schroder made sure to mention his departed father, Axel.

"I was just a kid from Braunschweig looking to make my dreams come true! When my dad passed away, I made a promise to him I would make it. And now to be living out these moments means so much to me!" he posted on Instagram.

"My family, friends, and this city have helped build me to the man I am today and for that I am so thankful! The love that was showed today was unbelievable! Thank you Braunschweig for everything! We going to keep climbing to the top!"

He signed the city's golden book and was welcomed by the people at the old town market.

It's a huge celebration for the town, since the local football club Eintracht Braunschweig last won the Bundesliga way back in 1967.

Schroder's German father, Axel, had attended Dennis' every game and practice as a child and even encouraged him to try for the NBA. Dennis' Gambian mother, Fatou, helped him focus on schooland even convined him to put that now familiar gold streak in his hair.

"It was tough to be a young black guy in Germany," Schroder said in an NBA interview with his then-squad, the Oklahoma City Thunder. "But then, when I grew up and got into basketball, people started respecting mewho I was and what I did for the schools and the teams. Then I got it way easier. Now, my city is everything to me."

Schroder's father died when Dennis was 16.

"I kind of promised him I would make it to the NBA. I was like, 'okay, I gotta do it for him," he vowed.

Schroder, world champion and FIBA MVP, did more than that.

Last year, his breakout game with Germany towards the EuroBasket bronze earned him a contract with the Los Angeles Lakers. Now, he will be wearing the jersey of the Toronto Raptors.

This year, he led Germany to a perfect 8-0 run to the FIBA World Cup title. Braunschweig is now more than the home of an established German football club, it's the home of a world basketball champion.

That world champion made a vow many years ago to his dad. He just fulfilled it years laterand in the most inspiring of ways.

Now, he is the crown jewel of Braunschweig, and he is not stopping just yet.