By now, you’ve heard the story of Willie Cauley-Stein and Blake Hundley, a 9-year-old UK fan battling brain cancer. The two met earlier this year and a friendship quickly took off, and because the national media is the national media, they’re just now getting wind of the story. Willie was asked how he met Blake in the breakout session today, and Willie said that before their famous meeting, he already had a connection with the young fan.
“One of my friends lives in Shelbyville and I had a dog in the summertime, a little puppy, and I was moving so I couldn’t have him anymore, so I ended up giving him to one of my friends and she had hit me earlier in the year saying she wanted to get a ball signed by everybody to give to Blake,” Willie said. “At the time, I didn’t know this was the same Blake that I end up meeting through a different friend. So I ended up going to this house and I thought, ‘Blake, that sounds familiar, but I’m not sure,’ and I walked into the house and it was the same kid! This is crazy. It clicked instantly.”
Like most fans would be, Blake was a little starstruck at first. “His family was great and he was so starstruck that he didn’t talk for like the first hour and finally he warmed up and he was rambling off with questions. It was great.”
Blake’s family raised money to bring him to Indianapolis, and Willie said Blake texted him last night. “It’s cool, he texted me yesterday and told me he’d tell me where he’s sitting so I can wave to him.”
Is Blake Willie’s good luck charm?
“I hope so,” Willie said. “Here lately, he has been, especially in the last game. The game came down to crunch time and the turn of events happened and I like to think that he is a good luck charm. It would be crazy if he was here and we end up winning it all and he got to experience it all. It would be nutty for him.”
Another reporter, who must read KSR, asked Willie about his #TeamBlake bracelet. “I wear it all the time,” Willie said. “I put it in my sock when I play. He told me if we win to put it on the camera when we got up on the stage and stuff. I hope I’m able to do that for him.”