Zhaire Smith’s parents, Billy Smith and Andrea Aaron raised him in separate households. The couple separated when he was young but continued to share an amicable relationship.
The former Philadelphia 76ers shooting guard, Zhaire Smith, has had tough few years. He went from being a miracle story of a three-star recruit to an NBA player to see only 13 games of NBA action in two years.
The first-round pick of 2018, Smith’s career has been riddled with injuries, the knee injury being the main culprit.
Zhaire Smith Parents, Billy Smith, And Andrea Aaron
Zhaire Smith’s parents, Billy Smith and Andrea Aaron, never married. They split before their marriage but became parents to two kids, both athletes.
A three-star recruit, Zhaire Smith’s journey to NBA is one for the ages. He was expected to return to Texas Tech for a second season instead he became an NBA player.
Billy Smith Was A Star Athlete
Growing up, Zhaire was close to his father, Billy Smith. He stayed over in his mom’s house, which was six blocks away, but most days, Zhaire would be picked up and dropped off by his father.
Before becoming paralyzed from the waist below, Billy was a two-sport athlete. He was dubbed “Bigg Dogg” for his build and played basketball at Kansas State.
He played alongside former NBA player Mookie Blaylock at Midland Community College and was listed by Sports Illustrated as one of the top five junior college transfers.
But soon Billy gave up on his wheelchair to become a motivation factor for his son. And it does look like it has done pretty well for both of them.
Andrea Aaron Went Viral For Athletic Build
During the 2018 NBA Draft, if there was one person, who caught the attention of the viewers, then it was Andra Aaron.
Standing at 5ft 10, Andrea has a build like that of an Olympian. She named Zhaire after a spiritual name of African descent, which meant to do well and prosper in life.
Since the early days, Andrea would join her son during gym sessions, helping him develop his body. In a video from 2020, Andrea is seen recalling the childhood memories with her son.
As said by Andrea, Zhaire’s first love was football, and he only started focusing on basketball in eighth grade. In 2018, when Zhaire faced an allergic reaction, Aaron took care of her son for the entirety of the time.
Speaking to the Athletic, Aaron said she drew strength from her son, not even complaining once. She said his focus on basketball and determination to return to the court made the family feel better.
Zhaire Smith Sister, Aayinde Smith, Is A Volleyball Athlete
Zhaire Smith’s sister, Aayinde Smith, is a volleyball player at Towson University. She is three years younger than her brother.
Standing at 6ft, Aayinde Smith plays a middle blocker for the Tigers. She recently finished her sophomore season at Towson, in which she made it to the second-team All-CAA and started all 31 matches.
She earned 164 kills at a .362 hit percentage and ranked 10th highest for a single season in program history. It was much more of an improved performance from her first season when she played only seven games.
In 2018, when Zhaire signed with the Sixers, Aayinde, and Andrea moved to Cherry Hill to remain close to him. Along with pursuing volleyball, Aayinde will graduate from Townson with a degree in business administration and is currently a sports marketing intern.