Nearly a decade after playing his final NBA game with the Memphis Grizzlies, 37-year-old ex-NBA player Darius Miles opened up on his journey to the NBA, the absurdity of life in the league, and his unfortunate off-court issues in a must-read Players’ Tribune essay titled “What the Hell Happened to Darius Miles?”
Miles touches on his experiences playing for then-Clippers owner Donald Sterling, and recounts his struggles growing up in East St. Louis. He also shared a hilarious (and slightly alarming) story about former Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal.
Miles wrote that he was pulled over for speeding on Los Angeles’ Interstate 405 one day when he was late for Clippers practice. The officer, who was driving an unmarked vehicle, turned out to be Shaq.
Via The Players’ Tribune:
“I remember one day I was running late for practice, so I was flying down the 405. All of a sudden, I look in the rearview, and I see the flashing lights. This unmarked police truck is right up on me. Tinted windows. Big heavy-duty truck. Woop-woop.
I knew I was speeding. So I pull over, and I roll the window down, and I’m reaching over into the glove compartment to get my papers ….
… Then I hear this voice. Big, booming voice.
“WHERE YOU G’WAN, BOY?”
I’m like, Damn, they got the sergeant on me or something?
I turn to look out the window, and I can’t even see this dude’s face he’s so big. All I see is his chest.
“I SAID WHERE YOU G’WAN BOY?”
Then he bends down and looks in the window.
Big, [expletive] grin on his face.
I’m like, “Yo! I’m going to practice! You made me late!”
He don’t miss a beat. He taps side of my truck, turns around and says, “Don’t worry about it. I’ll pay your fine. Just holler at me.”
I’m looking in the rearview mirror, like, How the hell …
Shaq’s got one of those old-school police lights that you put on the hood of your car like you see on C.O.P.S.
He gets in, laughing his [expletive] off, waving at me.”
O’Neal has been sworn in as a reserve officer in several locations across the country, from Arizona to Florida. He was named a Port of Los Angeles reserve officer in 2002, but it’s unclear if O’Neal had the authority to pull over Miles at the time.
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