The University of Memphis forward Karim Sameh Azab announced earlier that he has been diagnosed with leukemia-lymphoma (AML, ALL). The Egyptian big man learned about this a few weeks ago and decided to share the information with the public on Twitter. He has since started treatment and has asked for prayers while on this difficult journey. Azab knows this will be difficult, but has a solid support system coming from family, friends and the University of Memphis.
— karim the dream ?? (@kimosameh) April 21, 2018
High Point head coach and former Memphis Tigers head coach Tubby Smith said that Azab began complaining about discomfort in his shoulder last month during the American Athletic Conference Tournament. Azab’s legal guardian Greg Jones, Azab’s parents, Smith and Memphis’ new head coach Penny Hardaway have all visited with the forward since being diagnosed.
Azab is a 6’10” forward that saw a limited bench role in his sophomore season at Memphis where he averaged one point and point seven rebounds per game. Smith did mention that he had plans to start Azab that year before a knee/ankle injury derailed those hopes. The Memphis faithful and athletic department is fully behind and supporting of one of their own as he goes through treatment.
The school and coaches are fully behind Karim and hope for a full recovery from the young man that traveled from Eygpt to play Memphis basketball. The road will be long and likely difficult, but the young man seems to be in good spirits and ready to face this challenge head-on. Around 60,000 people are diagnosed with Leukemia per year and survival rates have trended up in recent years. Def Pen sends our best wishes to Karim Sameh Azab for a full recovery and a long and happy life after he recovers.