Delonte West, Lebron James' Former Teammate-Turned-Rival, Hasn't Had the Best Retirement

Delonte West, Lebron James' Former Teammate-Turned-Rival, Hasn't Had the Best Retirement

August 29, 2020

Delonte West isn’t enjoying the luxurious or safe retirement that some of his former teammates have enjoyed.

A longtime NBA guard best known for his rivalry with LeBron James, a video emerged earlier this year of West being assaulted. Several of his former coaches and teammates spoke out in support of West, who turned 37 in July.

Over a decade after he played his final game with James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, what has gone wrong for Delonte West? And, a few months after that video, are there any updates on his health?

Delonte West played nine NBA seasons

A prolific scoring guard at Saint Joseph’s, Delonte West entered the NBA as the 24th overall pick of the Boston Celtics in 2004.

West scored 4.5 points per night in 39 games (seven starts) as a rookie that year.

West joined the starting lineup in 2005 and averaged 11.8 points on 48.7% shooting with 4.1 rebounds, and 4.6 assists. All of those stats, save the points per game, were career-highs that West would never again eclipse.

After another productive year in Boston, the Celtics sent him to Seattle in the Ray Allen trade in 2007. West lasted half a year with the SuperSonics before Seattle traded him to join a young LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

West started at shooting guard to end the 2007-08 season and in all of the next season. Cleveland moved him to the bench in 2009, though, and he rejoined the Celtics in 2010.

West spent his final NBA season alongside Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks.

West averaged 9.7 points on 44.8% shooting with 2.9 rebounds and 3.6 assists per night in 432 career games. He also averaged 9.1 points, 2.8 assists, 2.5 blocks, and a steal in 58 postseason games, 33 of which he started.

West has battled personal problems throughout his life

Delonte West hasn’t had an easy life, whether it was before, during, or after his NBA career.

West told The Washington Post in 2015 that he abused drugs growing up. A doctor diagnosed West with bipolar disorder in 2008, although he later disputed that diagnosis.

West pleaded guilty to traffic and weapons charges after Maryland police arrested him in September 2009 for carrying two concealed handguns and a shotgun.

According to CBS 10 in Cleveland, West received “eight months of electronic monitoring, two years of unsupervised probation, 40 hours of community service and psychological counseling.”

West worked at a furniture store during the 2011 NBA lockout. He bounced around the D League and various non-NBA teams from 2013-15.

Where is Delonte West now?

Delonte West went viral earlier this year for the wrong reasons.

A Maryland police officer allegedly filmed a shirtless man speaking with officers after he was assaulted. When the video emerged on social media, people identified the man as West because of their shared tattoos.

Shortly after the video became public, former NBA point guard Jameer Nelson — who played with West in college — tweeted he was “sick to my stomach.”

Nelson said he and West spoke throughout 2019 about the latter’s mental health battles.

“Mental illness is something that a lot of people deal with and don’t even know it, until sometimes it’s too late. I’m not sure what exactly is going on with Dwest but he knows i’m in his corner and will help him get through this.”

The officer who filmed the video was suspended.

There have been no updates on Delonte West since the video leaked. Both Nelson and Phil Martelli, West’s former college coach, vowed to get him help.

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