Nene Hilario is a story of survival and hard work. He is a Brazilian basketball player who plays in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for the Houston Rockets. Since his debut in the NBA in 2002, he has been struggling for a place in the league after battling injuries and also fighting cancer, both of which he had the better side of both to remain the last active player in the 2002 draft.
Nene Hilario Biography
Although we all know him as Nene Hilario, the man from Huston Rockets was born on September 13, 1982, in São Carlos, Brazil, as Maybyner Rodney Hilário. He grew up with his older siblings Maykon Hilario and Mayaramy Hilario and was given the name Nene (Baby), and that is how it stayed.
Like most children who grew up in Brazil, Nene’s first love was football, which he played so well that many expected him to make a career out of it. But taking advantage of his height and build, he decided to become a basketball player.
After he decided to play the game, Nene started to visit the Escola de Basquete Meneghelli in his Brazilian hometown, but soon he did not come anymore, only to return a few weeks later crying with his mother. Upon request, Nivaldo Carlos Meneghelli Jr., who had founded the school, was informed that the family could no longer pay Nene’s school fees. Meneghelli allowed Nene to continue coming free of charge, and the older child remained there for the next seven years.
He had already started his professional career in 1999, playing for Vasco da Gama in Brazil, until he was invited to the NBA preliminaries camp in 2002. In the draft he was selected by the New York Knicks as the 7th overall candidate, making him the first Brazilian basketball player to be selected in the first round of the NBA draft.
Nene Hilario NBA Career
His professional career in the NBA should not start with the New York Knicks, because he was switched to the Denver Nuggets, with whom he played from 2002 to 2012. Although he had injury problems, he was awarded a five-year contract with the team worth $67 million in 2011.
In 2008, his career was interrupted after he had a seizure of testicular cancer, but the tumor was surgically removed. As a very strong Christian, Nene believes that his cancer and other struggles were just tests from God. The experience has brought him closer to God, and he values life a little more.
Washington Wizards would be Nene Hilario’s next target after he was traded in 2012. He played for the club until 2016 when he made another move to his current club, Houston Rockets.
Besides his NBA activities, Hilario also plays for the Brazilian national team. He received his first invitation to the Goodwill Games in 2001, where he helped the team take home the bronze medal. In the same year, he played with the team at the FIBA Americas Championship and took home the silver medal.
The parents of Nene Hilario are Jose Paulo Hilario and Carmen Hilario, and they raised him together with their two other children, Maykon Hilario and Mayaramy Hilario. His mother is a retired nurse.
On February 14, 2009, Nene Hilario married Lauren Prothe Hilario. The two met for the first time at the house of his friend and manager, Alex Santos, whose wife played volleyball together with the then-future wife Hilario. Nene and Lauren met in 2007 and two years later they decided to become man and wife at a ceremony held at Trinity United Methodist Church in Denver.
Just as Nene has his own story of survival, so does his wife have her own story. After suffering from a migraine on the left side of her head, it later turned out that Lauren Prothe Hilario had a benign tumor in her brain, which led to an operation to remove it.
Nene and his wife were blessed with a son, Mateos Hilario, who was born in 2012.
Height, Weight, BodyStats
Like most other players in the NBA, Nene Hilario has a very good height and body weight. He is 2,11 m (6 feet 11 in) tall and has a weight of 113 kg (250 lb). Although he has a wingspan of 7’5.5, his general body statistics are still unknown.