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by April Taylor
Antoine Walker’s story is a cautionary tale. He is a former NBA player who burst onto the scene as a sophomore at the University of Kentucky in the 1990’s where he helped the team win a National Championship. In the 1996 NBA Draft, Walker was chosen as the sixth overall pick by the Boston Celtics.
He was a productive player, making the All-Rookie First Team and leading the team in scoring. Walker became a standout for the Celtics teaming up with Paul Pierce. Walker made multiple All-Star Teams and helped the Celtics make it to the Eastern Conference finals during the 2001-2002 season.
Walker was eventually traded to the Dallas Mavericks but later returned to the Celtisc for a brief time before being traded to the Miami Heat, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Memphis Grizzlies. Walker last played for an NBA team in 2008.
Despte is NBA success, Walker is now broke, and he shares his story in the following video. A gambling habit saw him accrue nearly $800,000 in unpaid debt. He also faced three felony counts for writing bad checks that were related to gambling debts.
Gambling was not Walker’s only bad decision; at one point, he was taking care of an entourage of more than 70 friends and family members according to his mother. Despite earning nearly $110 million during his NBA career as well as endorsements, Walker was forced to file for personal bankruptcy in 2010. In August 2013, Walker made the announcement that he was debt free.
Walker is not the only professional athlete to find himself broke after earning millions of dollars. Walker has completed a documentary to help other professional athletes avoid the same pitfalls and mistakes he has experienced. Check out the video below to hear more about his story.
Do you think that the NBA gives adequate financial literacy training to it’s athletes?
Perhaps these men should reach out to individuals like Ryan Mack or Dr. Boyce Watkins for financial advice instead of relying on those provided by the NBA.
Tell us what you think.