The list of NBA legends who rose from New York City is long, and somewhere in the best point guards category is where you'll see the name, Kenny Anderson.
Like some of the all-time greats, Anderson was also once touted as the best NBA prospect of his generation. Having honed his game at Georgia Tech, "Mr. Chibbs" was undoubtedly destined to be a star on basketball's biggest stage.
The hype was real, and Anderson only needed three seasons to become an NBA All-Star after logging his career-best 18.8 points per game with the New Jersey Nets.
Younger fans may have never heard about him, but Anderson is sure the old heads know his legacy.
“The young kids don’t know me too well, but their parents do,” Anderson said of his legacy.
Dealing with health issues
Despite calling it a career in 2006, Anderson never left the sport as he decided to transition to coaching. In 2018, he was appointed as the head coach of NAIA Fisk University in Nashville.
“I knew the school needed some work in the athletic program,” Anderson told Slam Online last year. “I thought about my high school coach, Jack Curran, and that’s what I wanted to do. Start low, give these young men something to reach for.”
Unlike in playing, "Mr. Chibbs" dealt tougher challenges in coaching. He didn't find much success during his maiden season with the Bulldogs, finishing with an underwhelming record of 8-17. And Anderson’s dejection did not end on the court.
“I wasn’t eating right,” he says. “I was stressed out. Guys weren’t taking it serious enough. It was a lot of stress on me, I realized.”
It soon took a toll on Anderson’s health. Just days after his failed debut season as a coach, he suffered a stroke while at his Florida home. If it wasn’t for his dog Caleb and his daughter Tiana’s assertiveness, the former NBA star could’ve died after 48 hours. It was the biggest adversity Anderson had to face, but being a competitor, Kenny did not succumb to it and bounced back.
However, according to Anderson, he could tell his body was able to recover significantly, but his memory isn't as sharp as it used to be.
“I have no limitations physically, but my memory isn’t so good,” Anderson confessed.
At present, Anderson is in good spirits, and we hope it stays that way. Because no matter how much we love our job, health is still the most important thing in life.