Darren Collison retired from the NBA while still playing at a high level to fully dedicate himself to his religion. Collison is a member of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. There were even rumors the Lakers were trying to convince him to come back out of retirement last season, but we know that didn’t happen. To Collison, his religion is more important than the NBA.
“While I still love basketball, I know there is something more important, which is my family and my faith. I am one of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, and my faith means everything to me.”Darren Collison, The Undefeated
Collison wasn’t the only one who put his family and religion first. One of the tallest men to ever play in the NBA, the 7 feet and 6 1/4 inches “Stormin’ Mormon” Shawn Bradley always made it clear to teams he played for – his family and religion came first, the NBA was second. That conviction once cost him $10,000.
Bradley didn’t specify which team, so take your pick between one of the three he played for – 76ers, Nets, and Mavericks – organized a team meeting while on the road. They had told Bradley the team was meeting in a club, but Bradley figured out it was a strip club after doing some research. At that point, Bradley made it clear to the team that as a Mormon, he can’t go to a strip club.
“Guys, you understand I will not go there…it’s outside of my value system that I’m just not willing to do.”Shawn Bradley, 30 for 30
The team told him it was the only place they could find (!) and that he would be fined $10,000 if he did not attend the meeting. Bradley stuck by his principles and paid the fine. I mean, the only place they could find was a strip club? That sounds a bit absurd.
If the Harden Rockets were on the list, we’d know which team it was. This way, your guess is as good as mine.