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“Selling Drugs”: 5 Days After Carmelo Anthony’s ‘Run the Streets’ Confession, Former NBA Champion Reveals His Interaction With Gang Business

Nithin Joseph

"Selling Drugs": 5 Days After Carmelo Anthony's 'Run the Streets' Confession, Former NBA Champion Reveals His Interaction With Gang Business

Stephen Jackson is an NBA Champion and a recognized figure in the basketball community. However, prior to joining the ranks of the NBA, he grew up in a crime-ridden neighborhood in Port Arthur, Texas. This, as expected, wasn’t easy for Jackson, who revealed on the All the Smoke podcast that he considered selling drugs as a means to find acceptance in his neighborhood. This news comes just five days after NBA legend Carmelo Anthony told comedian Kevin Hart on his show, Gold Minds, that he also showed more interest in running the streets than playing basketball.

Safe to say, things weren’t easy for both Melo and Jackson growing up. Living in tough neighborhoods made it difficult for them to focus on what mattered most, basketball. Fortunately, they both escaped a life of crime and found their way to the NBA. Now, having both retired, they can look back at those times as nothing but a bad memory.

Similar to Carmelo Anthony, NBA Champion Stephen Jackson also considered a life in crime

A few days ago, Carmelo Anthony revealed he was more interested in becoming a thug than playing basketball as a child. Thankfully, fate had other plans for him, and he is now remembered as an NBA legend. Similarly, Stephen Jackson, a former NBA Champion, also considered a life in crime.

Breaking down his childhood experiences on the All the Smoke podcast, Jackson shared the details of his tough upbringing with co-host Matt Barnes and NFL Hall of Famer Terell Owens. He revealed that he grew up in a neighborhood where drug trafficking was rampant. In fact, his older brother was a prominent drug dealer in the area.

Wanting to follow in his footsteps, Jackson moved in with his father, whom his brother was living with. He hoped that by being in close proximity, his older brother would let him in on the “dope game”.

“My dad stayed around the corner from me my whole life and I didn’t actually meet him and have a relationship with him until I was like 12/13. I went to him to live with him because my older brother was there and my older brother was selling drugs. So I wanted to be in the dope game. So that’s why I moved over!”

Luckily, his dreams of being a drug dealer didn’t go any further. Shifting his focus to basketball, Jackson was drafted with the 42nd overall pick in 1997. He played for a number of teams, both in the NBA and abroad. But, the highlight of his career came in 2003, when he won his first and only ring with the San Antonio Spurs. Thus, becoming one of the many NBA superstars to find success despite their unorthodox surroundings.

Michael Jordan also started his NBA career in 1984 surrounded by drugs

It may not be much of an issue now, but drugs were a huge problem for the NBA in the early years. This was especially true during the 1970s and 1980s. Drugs were rampant in these eras, and NBA players used them on a regular basis. In fact, in 1984, upon being drafted into the NBA, the GOAT, Michael Jordan was surrounded by drugs.

In what is now described as the “Bulls traveling Cocaine circus”, Jordan recalled on several occasions how his veteran teammates would do cocaine in their hotel rooms. However, MJ wanted no part of it and did his best to avoid getting in trouble. His focus was simple, winning championships and in turn, improving the reputation of the Chicago Bulls.

It’s good that such things aren’t prevalent in today’s NBA. The league has come a long way since what can only be considered the dreary times of the 70s and 80s. Now, the only thing the best of the best are addicted to is winning.

About the author

Nithin Joseph

Nithin Joseph


Nithin is a content writer at The SportsRush. Like his favorite athlete Kobe Bryant, the company has helped Nithin elevate his writing skills to a whole new level, especially as an NBA content writer. With over 1500 articles to his name, Nithin's love for the sport knows no bounds. And, as he continues to watch the sport on a daily basis, he hopes his fascination with the NBA, especially the Miami Heat will inspire more and more readers to give the sport a chance. Perhaps, one day making basketball in India as big as it is in the United States.

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