The NBA star kept his illegitimate daughter a secret until she became one of the best tennis players in the world and the press could no longer hold it. Though it was difficult for both, they managed to overcome their differences and start a new relationship.
Former NBA player Julius Erving’s daughter, Alexandra Stevenson, grew up to be a beautiful woman and also a formidable tennis player. At 40 years old, she is still full of youth as we can see just by having a glimpse at her social media.
In a recent photo she posted on her Instagram, Alexandra appears very focused on practicing tennis on a court at home, since she is quarantining because of the coronavirus pandemic. She captioned the photo with some words of positive advice:
“Stay tough, motivated, and keep having goals. #motivationmonday #servepractice (tennis ball) ”
Other images show herself very joyful like the one she appears taking a sunbath with her dogs. In another picture, she looks gorgeous wearing a dress designed by Cynthia Rowley right before she got to debut as an ESPN commentator. She even has a nice selfie she took next to her good friend Serena Williams.
NO FATHER AT HOME
Even though Alexandra looks joyful in almost every photo she posts, it was not like that when growing up, because though being the NBA legend’s daughter, they never met each other until she was 19 years old.
Alexandra is the out-of-wedlock daughter of Julius, with Samantha, a former freelance sportswriter he met in the late 1970s. The little girl was born in December 1980, and though Samantha told Julius to go to hospital to meet his daughter, he never showed up again.
In kindergarten, little Alexandra became aware that she did not have a father, so her mother showed her a photo of her famous dad from a book and told her who he was. "This is your father. He's a great person, and he happens to be a basketball player. I'm your mom, and you live with me, but it's important for you to know he loves you’, she said.
ON THE TENNIS COURT
Alexandra started her career as a tennis player at a very young age. She was 10 when she began to train with Pete Sampras' childhood coach, Pete Fischer. At 12, she was already serving at 100 mph and had practiced with such stars like Bobby Riggs, Ellsworth Vines, and Don Budge.
It was in 1999 when Alexandra became the first qualifier to reach the Wimbledon women's singles finals, and it was also about that time when it was finally revealed by the press that she was Doctor J's daughter. Julius denied it at first but he admitted it two days later and asked the press to give Alexandra space.
MEETING EACH OTHER
In 2002 she became No. 18 in the world, earning a name by herself, but in 2004 she suffered a serious injury on her right shoulder and she had to undergo surgery. After recovering, she was not able to reach the point she had left and started to be more difficult every time to afford competitions.
That was when she decided to call her father to ask him for financial support. Though it was hard for her at first, a simple phone call was the spark that started up their new father and daughter relationship which they hold until today.
After an acclaimed path as a college player, Erving started his career with Virginia Squires. Two years later, he joined the New York Nets and led the club to the title, at this time he received the Most Valuable Player Award. In 1976, he was sold to the Philadelphia 76ers, where the player drove the team towards a world championship.
However, his life off the court was very opposite. He opened up about his complicated personal life in a shocking autobiography called "Dr. J". In it, he honestly talks about his turbulent marriage to his first wife, Turquoise, the tragic death of their teenage son, Cory, and the complicated relationship with his illegitimate daughter.