Over 17 years after leaving college early to enter the NBA, Chris Paul graduated from Winston-Salem State University Friday.
Paul attended the ceremony in North Carolina less than 12 hours after his Phoenix Suns defeated the Clippers in Los Angeles.
Paul graduated with a bachelor’s degree in communications, and he had a gift for his fellow graduates.
The future Hall of Famer gave each graduate $2,500.
“Man, it’s cool. I’m excited. Long time coming,” Paul said after Thursday’s game. “To be able to go back home and do that with my family is something that snuck up kinda quick, but I’m probably most excited that I get to spend the next 10 days with my wife and my kids.”
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Paul was born in Winston-Salem, grew up in nearby Lewisville and went to West Forsyth High School in Clemmons. He played college basketball at Wake Forest, located in Winston-Salem, for two years before forgoing his final two years of college eligibility to go pro. He was taken with the fourth overall pick of the 2005 NBA Draft by the New Orleans Hornets.
Paul will now shift his focus to the Suns, whose 17-12 record is the fourth-best in the Western Conference.
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