As you grow older, you realize some people are not quite as perfect as you think. Everybody makes mistakes when they are younger and deserves a second chance in my opinion. Money, fame, and fortune can either be an athletes best friend or worst enemy because it can make some athletes feel above the law. But these 5 players I am about to mention, you probably didn’t know they did this.
5. Richard Jefferson: If you know slightly anything about Richard Jefferson, you will know that he is a well spoken person and is highly respected throughout the league and seems to have a calm demeanor on and off the court. With that being said, this has clearly not always been the deal, because in May of 2008, Jefferson took things way too far. RJ was arrested for an incident that occurred over 3 months earlier in Minneapolis, where he allegedly choked a man unconscious. Jefferson was inside a private area for the victim’s birthday, and when the victim acted him to leave, Jefferson put 2 hands around the man’s neck, apparently saying, “Do you know who I am?”. Like I said, this completely does not sound like the funny Richard Jefferson we know today 11 years later, maybe that’s why this was overlooked so much?
4. Greg Oden- Known as being one of the biggest Draft busts in NBA history, that seems to cover up his criminal history. Oden unfortunately turned to alcohol to cope with his personal, mental, and professional problems that he was facing. Battling alcoholism back in 2014, Oden repeatedly struck his ex-girlfriend in the face at his mother’s house on August 7th, 2014 in Indiana. Oden was charged with 2 felony battery counts, and 2 misdemeanor battery counts. More than a year following the brutal attack, Oden pleaded guilty to battery and prosecutors dropped the other 3 charges. Lucky for Oden, no one ever brings this up.
3. Darren Collison- Collison is one of the more quiet players in the Association, you don’t hear much about him and he does not light up the stat sheet. His criminal past has seemingly been as low key as his game as well. Collison assaulted his wife in May 2016, and was arrested and arraigned with one misdemeanor count of domestic violence causing injury and one domestic battery charge. Speaking on the situation, Collison said, “Words cannot describe the feelings and regret I have been experiencing the past couple of months, this is far from who I am as a person and not something I am proud of. I have apologized to my beautiful wife that I have known and loved since high school.” Collison pleaded guilty to misdemeanor domestic battery a few months later and was sentenced to 20 days in jail and only 20 hours of community service. Collison was also forced to attend a domestic abuse program, as part of his 3-year informal probation period. You can say he bounced back from this incident, as he has been to the playoffs 2 times in a row with Indiana since then.
2. Jason Richardson- JRich was known for his vicious dunks and posters over opponents throughout his career. Although he was an incredible dunker for many years, that legacy was kinda tarnished periodically throughout his career though as Richardson was arrested 3 times. The first arrest would come from April 2003, where Richardson was arrested after a fight with his ex. The fight allegedly began after she found JRich looking through letters and pictures of the victim and her current boyfriend. She accused him of pushing her down and kicking her in the side, all in front of their 3 year old daughter. Then, in December of 2008, Richardson would be arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. His final arrest would come shortly after in February of 2009. Richardson was pulled over after being spotted going an insane 90 mph in a 35 mph zone. After being stopped, officers saw his 3 year old son with him in the backseat, without a car seat. Fortunately, he was pulled over before he could have potentially gotten himself, his son or someone else killed driving so crazy. In addition to being charged with reckless driving, he was arrested for child endangerment.
1. Zach Randolph- Known as being one of the toughest players in the league at a time who was fearless in the post but this hard, thuggish demeanor isn’t just a persona for Zibo. He has been arrested four separate times over his NBA career. His first arrest came back when Zibo was with the Blazers, he was caught drinking underage in Indiana. Funny a crowd full of thousands can get as drunk as they want but the person entertaining them can’t. The second arrest came in 2003, after Randolph was driving under the influence of marijuana. The third arrest came after Randolph’s Clippers lost a game to the Lakers, and he went and drinking and was charged with ANOTHER DUI. His most recent arrest came in 2017 with the Kings. While the LA police were taking a patrol, they encountered a group of men drinking, smoking weed, and blaring music while blocking a street. The officers then began to disperse the crowd, and the crowd escalated. When the crowd began to grow, the officers called for backup and people started throwing bottles at the police cars. Multiple people were arrested, including Randolph who was found with pot. This was his four career arrest, and 1st in about 8 years.