Nerlens Noel brings 7-year-old leukemia patient to Kentucky Derby

By Jeff Borzello | College Basketball Writer

Before reading this, chances are you had no reason not to like Nerlens Noel. He played hard throughout the season, and then suffered a torn ACL in February that ended his stellar freshman campaign.

After reading this, it's going to be impossible not to like Noel.

Over the weekend, the Kentucky star attended the Kentucky Derby, walking the red carpet and taking plenty of pictures. And who was his partner in most of his activities?

Kelly Melton -- a 7-year-old who suffers from leukemia.

Noel met Melton at the University of Kentucky Children's Hospital, and the future lottery pick invited Melton to accompany him to the Derby.

The Louisville Courier-Journal asked both of them some questions on the red carpet.

“I invited him here to come experience this with me,” Noel said. “It's my first, it's his first. It's a great opportunity for us to come out here and just enjoy it.”

Watch the full 90-second interview above -- it's heartwarming.

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