Bismack Biyombo’s motivation to join title contender came after losing father

Apr 28, 2023, 6:20 PM

Phoenix Suns' Bismack Biyombo (18) reaches for a rebound next to Washington Wizards' Daniel Gafford...

Phoenix Suns' Bismack Biyombo (18) reaches for a rebound next to Washington Wizards' Daniel Gafford (21) during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Phoenix, Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2022. The Wizards won 113-110. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

(AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

After his father passed away in August 2021, Bismack Biyombo took a break from the NBA to start the 2021-22 season. He used that time to reflect on what his aspirations were for the rest of his playing days.

“I was just looking for a team that wanted to win because at some point of your career you get tired of just being in the league … eventually you start questioning a lot of things,” Biyombo told Arizona Sports’ Wolf & Luke on Wednesday.

“I lost my dad so the motivation to win something continued to increase and honestly, I didn’t watch a lot of teams and it was just praying and following the guidance of God and seeing where it was going to lead me. A lot of teams were calling. A lot of them were championship contenders, but I don’t know, I was just drawn to Phoenix.”

The 6-foot-8 backup center put up eight points, eight rebounds and three blocks in 12 minutes during the Suns’ first-round, series-clinching win over the Clippers on Tuesday.

Biyombo ended the season with his hands held high, blocking 27 shots in the last 11 games of the regular season. His aggressiveness and maximum effort now has him seeing consistent minutes behind starter Deandre Ayton in the playoffs as the Suns move on to face the Denver Nuggets.

“One question that I always like to ask myself at the end of the game is did I play as hard or did I give my team the best chance to win a game,” Biyombo said.

“I think that’s always been a big question for me rather than are things going my way or not going my way. But being able to go back home and look yourself in the mirror and say look, ‘things are not going my way but I got out there and I played as hard as I could and I gave my team the best chance to win a game.'”

The Suns will tip off against the No. 1 seed Nuggets on Saturday in the Western Conference semifinals.

“Denver is going to be a whole different fight,” Biyombo said.

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Bismack Biyombo’s motivation to join title contender came after losing father