FORMER NBA star Delonte West once graced the basketball court with LeBron James when the two were teammates with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
West, 38, was with the Cavaliers for two and a half seasons before being traded in 2010 after rumors surfaced online that he was having an affair with James’ mother – allegations he vehemently denies.
And years later, footage emerged that captured West’s begging in Alexandria, Virginia.
The shooting guard was drafted to the Boston Celtics in 2004 as the 24th pick in that year’s NBA draft.
West averaged 12.2 points per game for Boston during the 2006-07 season.
He then moved to the Cavaliers, where he played alongside James between 2008 and 2010.
The basketballer was part of a quartet supporting James alongside Mo Williams, seven-foot-three star Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Brazilian star Anderson Varejão.
In 2009, West’s averages rose to around 14 points per game, and he posted a career-high 22 points in Game 6 of that year’s playoffs against the Orlando Magic.
West was trafficked in 2010 when rumors surfaced online that he was having an alleged affair with James’ mother, Gloria.
James also left the Ohio side and joined the Miami Heat.
Former basketball player Calvin Murphy claimed his NBA sources told him rumors were “true,” according to the Bleacher Report.
West, who also played for the Dallas Mavericks, has firmly denied rumors that he slept with James’ mother, Yahoo reported.
He told the Mavericks blog: “It affected me. Everywhere I go, first question: “Don’t tell me you did that.
“If we are to grow as a human race, what are we teaching our children by trying to make humor and fun out of such things?
“First of all, nothing like this ever happened. I don’t know where they got this rumor from.”
West said it was “terrible” that people would try to “tear Gloria down.”
“DELONTE IS NOT CRAZY”
Years later, West faced health struggles and was arrested in Florida in 2021.
Dmitri, Delonte’s brother, told DailyMail.com in 2016 that his sibling was suffering from bipolar disorder.
He spoke after Delonte was seen walking barefoot in a Houston parking lot.
Dmitri said: “Delonte West is not crazy, he does not use drugs.
“As far as I know, my brother suffered from bipolar disorder.
“I don’t know what’s on his mind exactly, but I can tell you he’s safe and fine.
“My family is trying to get him the best professional help available, the best they can afford.”
Dmitri compared bipolar disorder to a type of cancer.
He said, “It can hit anyone, rich or poor, whether you’re an NBA player or a football player.”
Delonte was also spotted in a hospital gown in 2016 on the streets of Houston, reportedly begging for a change.
The former Cavalier was apparently spotted begging in north Dallas in September 2020.
Mark Cuban, the billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, picked him up at a gas station just days later after the photos went viral.
Cuban reportedly took West to a Florida rehab center and paid for his treatment.
In January 2021, the Athletic reported that West had accepted a job at the therapy center.
West was arrested in Boynton Beach, Fla., in October 2021 after reportedly banging on the police department lobby doors, according to WPTV.
An arrest report claimed West hurled insults and continued to yell at officers when they told him to stop.
According to the police report, he was carrying two open containers of alcohol.
Police said West smelled of alcohol and slurred his speech.
He was accused of resisting arrest without violence and disorderly intoxication.
West was released on bail on the morning of October 20, 2021.
And months later he was apparently spotted begging in Alexandria.
Footage that went viral on social media appeared to show West walking on the sidewalk, where he encountered a person in a truck.
In the clip, a man can be heard saying, “My dog Delonte, eh [are] Are you doing my brother?”, according to a clip shared on social media.
West, holding a piece of cardboard, goes to the vehicle and shakes the man’s hand.
It is unknown what, if anything, West said to the man in the truck.
And it’s not known what West’s cardboard sign said.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/5556745/delonte-west-tragic-downfall-nba/ In Delonte West’s tragic descent from NBA star to beggar after wild rumors he had an affair with LeBron James’ mother