Delonte West, who played 10 seasons in the NBA for four teams including the Cleveland Cavaliers and Dallas Mavericks as well as stints overseas, was allegedly shown in a video getting beaten up by an unidentified man and talking incoherently in or near Washington, D.C. The video footage first surfaced on social media on Sunday.
For those who know about West’s struggles with bipolar disorder, the new footage may not be as surprising. But many people on social media who said they were familiar with West, 36, and his basketball career were still taken aback after seeing the videos.
West played alongside LeBron James in Cleveland for three seasons, prompting many people to wonder if the most popular player in the NBA ever tried to intervene. That answer may be a bit more complicated considering the unproven yet persistent rumor that West had a sexual relationship with James’ mother while they were teammates in Cleveland.
That scene was followed by more footage that showed a person who sure looked like West sitting on a curb while handcuffed without a shirt on and speaking in unintelligible terms that resembled a manic episode. A voice can be heard questioning him — presumably a police officer — though it was not immediately clear who was doing the asking. It was also unclear who was filming the episode and why it was being filmed.
At one point in his career, West was one of the best college basketball players before at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia before being drafted into the NBA and enjoying a career as a reliable backup guard for some top teams. He showed steady improvement his first three seasons before taking a step backward when he got traded, ultimately admitting he had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder during the 2008 preseason, according to the Washington Post.