Sorry for the long break everybody. Truth is I stumbled unto some new TV shows (Modern Family, True Blood, 90210) as of late. I ended liking all of them so much that I went on a non-stop (from their pilot episodes to most recent ones) marathon until I got caught up on all of them. Since I have now completed this task, we can now go back to our regularly scheduled program.
Some people may or may not know this, but I have an NBA record to my name. It wasn’t something I was striving to achieve; it was just one of those unique occurrences that just happen. To date no one has actually gone through what I have and I kind of hope they won't, I'm not saying that in a selfish way either. This extraordinary feat took place during the 2007-08 NBA season. I was going into my second year, and ended up playing for a record five different teams in one season. Until it was brought to my attention, it never crossed my mind to even think about if there was a record for this, let alone if I was breaking it.
The moving carousel started up in early January 2008 when Denver decided to let me go. I was out of a job for 3 days and my birthday just so happened to fall right in that stretch, nice birthday present right? One day after my birthday, the Memphis Grizzles signed me and I played there for about a month. Then on January 18, I posted career highs in points (20), rebounds (13), assists (7), steals (3) and minutes played (40) all in one game against the then Seattle Super Sonics. After that game I finally felt like I was on my way, but even with that performance I still wasn’t signed for the remainder of the season. But with that single game, it made other NBA team curious about me.
So for the next couple of months, I lived weeks at a time not knowing where I would be. On multiple occasions when my agent would call me, his first few words would be, “Can you make a flight in 3 hours to…?” And for that reason, I never fully unpacked my bags no matter where I was. After Memphis was Houston, then Miami followed. By far the most depressing period took place when I was finished my stint with the Heat. I reluctantly boarded a plane back to my D League team (South Dakota); somebody should have placed me on suicide watch for that following week. Going from South Beach to South Dakota is never an enjoyable feeling on any level, trust me.
As exciting as it was to travel the country and be apart of all of those different NBA teams, there also came the time where I would have to leave again and again and again and again and again. As I would get the unfortunate news that I was no longer going to be there, I always kept a smile on my face and left a good impression (because you never know if you will be returning). But after so many times getting the same reoccurring speech, it frustrated the hell out of me. Even when I had played good and averaged respectable numbers with teams, I still was let go. Even for those who are mentally strong (which I think I am), everybody has a breaking point. I was left always constantly asking myself, “What else can I do?” After a while I came to realize some things are just out of your control from time to time. You just have to make sure you put your best effort forward and not have any regrets. You know what did make me feel a little bit better at times? Knowing that with every team I went too, I did receive a nice check which I was very happy about.
I know many people view pro athlete as over paid, ungrateful, spoiled, lucky, etc. But for every prominent athlete in the media there are countless athletes struggling out there. And this is the life they will live for the time being, just so they can try to live the dream. This profession is so unstable and one can only try to make the best of the situation before it's too late. Maybe it will not be as extreme as my case bouncing around to 5 teams. Regardless, on some level this is the journey they will make in the pursuit of happiness. And in the pursuit of my happiness, I ended up with a record I can look back on later in life. So when I’m in my custom built mansion looking at all my framed jerseys in my game room I’ll say, “What I did was pretty cool”.
Recap of 2007-08 Season
Denver Nuggets (Sept. 10th - Jan 7th)
Memphis Grizzlies (Jan 10th- 28th)
Houston Rockets (Feb 26th- Mar 6th)
Miami Heat (March 12th- 21st)
San Antonio Spurs (April 1st- April 11th)
Denver Nuggets (April 12th until the end of season)