Caleb Swanigan is one of those players that had a very unique and challenging journey to the NBA. Unfortunately, he faced numerous adversities, like growing up with a father dealing with addiction and being raised in an unstable situation. As a result, Swanigan picked up a few unhealthy habits and dealt with substantial weight issues.
Luckily for him, things turned around when he was 13 – Swanigan got adopted into a new and secure family. After that, he went through a significant psychical transformation, growing to 6’9” and 265 lbs, becoming a monster on the basketball court with that big frame. After a great high school career, Caleb committed to Purdue in 2015. He spent two years there, got into even better shape, and entered the 2017 Draft, where the Blazers selected him with the 26th pick.
Swanigan had a great summer league campaign, leading the Blazers to the final game, but despite that, he didn’t get too much time on the court in his rookie season, spending the majority of the time in the G-Leauge. Next season he got traded to the Kings but still rode the pine, only to be traded back to the Blazers the season after that. Swanigan played his last game before the league got shut down because of COVID and opted out of playing in the bubble.
Many people thought he would get signed as a free agent this season, but it became apparent that will not happen, as Swaingan got arrested in December on a drug charge. He recently had a court date, shocking everybody with his psychical appearance. He gained an enormous amount of weight, looking most likely in the 400+ lbs range. Just a year ago, Swanigan was playing in the NBA in great shape, weighing around 250 lbs.
It’s hard to judge him, as the pandemic has been hard for numerous people. However, getting arrested, traded, and never getting a good chance in the NBA took a toll on Swanigan, as his former teammate and NBA superstar Damian Lillard came into his defense on Instagram.
"You don’t know WHAT it is he’s going through to cause a drastic change. If you gone be supportive then do that but don’t ask no shit like that like it’s not possible when you naturally a big dude and go down a dark road."
– Damian Lillard speaks out on Caleb Swanigan. 🗣 pic.twitter.com/H9eINP2GSZ
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) May 19, 2021
It’s shocking how fast Swaingan gained all that weight. But going from working out daily with an NBA team and not eating properly is a significant change. Caleb has gone through a lot in his life and transformed already once, so if somebody has the mental toughness and will to get himself together and make an NBA comeback, it is him. I wish him the best.