Jeremy Ledi exemplifies the joy of sport. He realizes that his greatest asset may be his physical ability. He is also aware that his mental aptitude is important in reaching his goals.
Jeremy Ledi is only nine years old!
Right now this talented athlete is concentrating on the sports of basketball and soccer.
Two sports in which he has moved up an age group to play with athletes who may be up to three years older than him.
He is a quicksilver guard within the ranks of the Northern Trailblazers Basketball program, giving away plenty of inches on the hardwood while standing only 4-foot-4.
“Jeremy really does fit in and you don’t really notice (height differential) that much because he is hustling and not afraid and fearless,” remarked his father Edmund, who was an all-around athlete growing up (St. Albert, Alberta) with an emphasis on long jump. “He wants to be engaged with the rest of the team.”
Jeremy, who will enter Grade 4 this fall at Elsie Yanik Catholic School, is also a fan of basketball and said his favourite team is the Los Angeles Lakers.
He cheers for Lakers superstar LeBron James and can rattle off the names of former superstars that wore the purple and gold jersey: “Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Shaq, Kobe Bryant and I forget his name but his last name is Magic (Johnson) and that is all.”
His favourite player though is Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors, “Because he is good at three-pointers.”
Asked how many three-pointers he has made Jeremy answers sheepishly…”I’ve only made two in my life.”
With his dedication – be it in the gym or nearby outdoor court – many more three-pointers will no doubt be dropping in the near future.
What does he like about basketball?
“I enjoy scoring points and that there is a lot of different moves. I am fast on the court and I like dribbling with cross-overs, through-the-legs and behind-the-back. And I guess I’m pretty good at stealing the ball”
What is it like playing against players who may be two or three grades higher?
“It was good but hard at the same time. The kids were older than me and knew a little bit more. They were taller….much taller.”
Despite his diminutive size, Jeremy managed several games where he was in double figures scoring.
But it is in the sport of soccer that he truly shines.
In the local Under 11 soccer all-star game he led his side to a 4-3 victory by scoring…get this…all four goals.
That is a Texas Hat Trick!
“I think I am good at shooting in soccer and fast.”
Like other kids his age, Jeremy is involved in a myriad of activities with swimming, rock climbing, playing outside and showing his skills with video games. “NBA 2K Playgrounds 2 is my favorite video game and in game mode, I like Vince Carter.”
Jeremy’s hand-eye coordination is also complemented in that he also plays the piano.
His older sister Gabriella, also a multi-sport athlete, is going into Grade 6 where she excels in basketball, soccer and volleyball.
Let’s not forget their mom Adriana, with her sports knowledge focused on basketball, soccer and volleyball.
His parents are supportive of his involvement in sport.
“Jeremy loves sports and Jeremy has been very active since he was able to move. For us…we noticed that he was quite athletic and liked running and jumping and throwing,” said Edmund.
“This year (moving up an age division) we wanted to see what the experience would be for him. There were some ups and downs as the kids are a bit older and stronger.
“He has the opportunity to learn about team \work and work ethic and all the good things which sports give you. We will make sure he has the opportunities. I don’t think it will be to the point where we have everything invested in him and then he doesn’t want to do it anymore. We want him to enjoy himself.”
The Joy of Sport!
Gabriella (sister), Jeremy, Edmund Ledi (father) and Adriana Ledi (mother). Photos by Curtis J. Philips
About the author
Curtis J. Phillips
Residing in Fort McMurray since 1982, Curtis J. Phillips is a productive sports journalist in print/electronic mediums. He enjoys researching local sports history and was Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference Sports Writer from 2008-2019. Recognized as Canada’s Basketball Historian, he is an advocate for community volunteerism.