Today, January 25, 2014, this Examiner had the opportunity to interview Mr. Don Johnson. Mr. Johnson is a retired NBA player of the Detroit Pistons. He reports playing between 1978 - 1979 under the coaching leadership of Mr. Dick Vitale, who is now known as a 'high energy' sports broadcaster. Mr. Johnson also reports playing basketball for the NBA for three years - six different teams. He states: "It was much different from how it is now."
When asked what advice he would give to young men who aspire to play basketball for the NBA, Mr. Johnson states: "They shouldn't aspire to play for the NBA before aspiring to be successful in the classroom." He told examiner that the chances of many of them playing for the National Basketball Association is very similar to the odds of winning the lottery. He goes on to explain there is nothing wrong with having dreams of playing professional ball; but that one must put that same energy and motivation they have for the court, into the classroom. Additionally, he provided the reasons for his philosophy. Mr. Johnson emphasized the need to have an education and field of study to sustain you once your basketball career is over. He also mentioned the fact that it could end sooner than later if the player is injured to the point of no return. So, to all those young men who want to play basketball for the NBA, make sure you are a superstar in the classroom as well.
Is Mr. Don Johnson a man of his word? Yes, he is.... In addition to his tenure and retirement from the NBA, he is currently an affiliate of the Department of Children and Family Services - Intact Unit. He also coaches basketball for Malcolm X College and Proviso West High School. He shares this same advice with his current players; and encourages them to not only excel on the court; but to strive to be just as extraordinary in academics and optional careers.