Former NBA star Antoine Walker has pleaded guilty to one felony count of passing bad checks in the form of unpaid gambling debts in Las Vegas. The 34-year-old Walker will now be put on probation so he can work off the more than $750,000 he owes. The complaint was originally filed against Walker in 2009, accusing him of having debts at Caesar’s Palace, Red Rock Resort and Planet Hollywood.
Two things…First, Antoine Walker is only 34?!? And second, this guy had roughly $110 million in career earnings and he couldn’t pay back $750,000? Listen kids, if you’re out there pay attention to this statement, because I don’t know much but I do know this: don’t ever, ever get in debt to a casino. Seriously, just don’t. I’ve read and seen things.
Walker last played in the NBA in 2008 when he managed to get in 46 games for the Minnesota Timberwolves. He actually was part of the Miami Heat’s Championship team in 2006, playing in all 82 regular season games. The sad part about this is that Walker was such a huge rising star. He made three All-Star teams (1998, 2002, 2003) and got a huge six-year, $71 million contract from the Boston Celtics in 1999. Problem is, Walker got lazy, gained weight and was content to just launch 3-pointers and stopped actually putting in effort. He was out of the league at just 31 years old.
Now, instead of being able to latch on to an NBA team and get the veteran’s minimum, teams don’t trust his work ethic, so he’s stuck playing full-time in the D-League for the Idaho Stampede.
Walker played 43 games for the Stampede in 2010-11, averaging 16.0 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 33.5 minutes per game.
Walker filed for bankruptcy on May 18, 2010 listing his total assets at $4.3 million and debts of $12.7 million. That’s absolutely ridiculous. Things were so bad that friend and former Kentucky teammate Nazr Mohammed paid half of the fee of Walker’s bankruptcy attorney.
This is just a really sad story of a guy wasting his talent and his money. Hopefully Walker gets things figured out and gets his life back in order.