NCAA champion. NBA Champion. Shimmy Champion. On the surface and/or on paper, the 36 year old former NBA All-Star that tweeted multiple times (no his account wasn’t hacked) that he should be the new Celtics coach sounds more qualified than many past player turned coaches but the big difference is character and reputation. Deserving or not, Antoine Walker has been cursed with a few bad labels and being the poster child for NBA players with 100+ million contracts going broke and filing for bankruptcy, his image isn’t shouting the type of responsible person that owners want coaching their young talent.
Walker told the Boston Globe
“People want to know how serious you are and what you want to do,” he said. “It’s hard. I think I left the game with a black cloud over me, not necessarily on the basketball court but to my bankruptcy and dealing with things off the court kind of left a lot of NBA executives with a negative taste about me.
“I didn’t commit a crime or anything like that, it was something personal that went on so I’ve had a black cloud over me a little bit, so when I go to teams I have to be able to express myself and let people know that I’ve moved on from that phase of my life.”
“I want to coach, I want to be back in the game, I love the game and am a student of the game,” he said. “I want to stress seriously that I do want to become a coach. Guys like Jason Kidd and Mark Jackson, they’re not the only ex-players, but even Monty Williams and Jacque Vaughn, there’s a lot of guys starting to get opportunities and so the league is getting younger coaches, so why not try to put myself in that position? Obviously I’m lacking in experience, but we’ve all got to start from somewhere.”
“Hopefully one of these organizations will give me an opportunity to get back in in some type of capacity,” Walker said. “I’ve reached out to everybody. I’ve reached out to different GMs. Yes, I have reached out to [Ainge] and hopefully one day he’ll pick up the phone and give me an opportunity.”
Under Walker’s twitter handle in his profile it says “It’s not over yet, just the beginning…”
I personally hope this is just the beginning of a new stage in Walker’s career because he was one of the most talented players forwards I’ve ever seen play and the only things most people associate with him now is losing a $100 million, losing ex Basketball Wife Evelyn Lozada and being the focus of the first great NBA meme.
Source: Boston Globe
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