INDIANAPOLIS — Before Saturday night’s Final Four games, one die-hard Kentucky fan is already celebrating a big win.
Blake Hundley, 9, has always wanted to see Kentucky play, but he’s never gotten that chance. He’s been focused on battling brain cancer.
His dream is to watch his favorite player, Willie Cauley-Stein, take the court.
Family friends Craig McKinney and Matt Burgin made Blake’s wish come true. They started a GoFundMe.com page to collect donations to send Blake to the Final Four. Within hours, friends and strangers donated more than $5,000, more than enough money to send Blake and his family to Indianapolis. They plan to use extra funds for Blake’s medical costs.
“It means so much to us,” said Blake’s mother, Kelly Hundley. “Blake’s been through so much in three years, and it just gives him time to be normal.”
Blake got to see his idol practice Friday.
“He’s my best friend now,” Blake said.
But what does he love about him?
“I can text him, and he can dunk real good,” Blake said.
The two have been friends since Cauley-Stein visited Blake in Kentucky last month.
“Since he’s met Willie, it takes his mind off having to do chemo every day,” Kelly Hundley said.
Cauley-Stein said he and Blake inspire each other. He hopes Blake brought some good luck to Indianapolis.
“It’d be crazy if he was here and we end up winning it all, and he got to experience it all,” Cauley-Stein said.
Cauley-Stein wears a blue bracelet that says “Team Blake.” Blake wears Cauley-Stein’s dog tags and will be cheering him on from the stands.
Because that’s what friends do.