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'I got children': Ex-NBA star Delonte West DEFENDS begging for money after panhandling video goes viral

The Former NBA player defended begging and made it clear that he would do whatever it takes to provide for his family
Former NBA player Delonte West was captured begging roadside in Virginia (Twitter/@BSO(L) and Harry How/Getty Images(R))
Former NBA player Delonte West was captured begging roadside in Virginia (Twitter/@BSO(L) and Harry How/Getty Images(R))

Delonte West, a former NBA player said he is between jobs and doing his best to support his family after a video of him panhandling on the side of a road in Virginia went viral last week. Delonte stated that he is doing well and doesn't want his fans to worry.

The viral video shows the ragged sportsman, who has battled drug and mental health concerns, walking up to a car full of his supporters while holding a cardboard placard. After failing to make the Big 3, the former basketball star was in good spirits when cameras caught up with him. He also made it clear that he would do whatever it takes to provide for his family. When asked for an update on his employment condition in the video obtained by, Delonte said, "I got children. I'm in between jobs. People can help me as much as they can, but you know, as a man I gotta do what I gotta do for my babies."


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The former Boston Celtics star, 38, answered the cameraman's question about how he was doing after his panhandling secret was revealed, "It is what it is." Delonte stated that he is not given up on his ambitions to play basketball again in NBA despite the financial setback. According to, he intends to carry on coaching. "I was excited to have the opportunity," he said about the Big 3. "I'll be there next season. I'll be there rooting guys on."



"I'm always involved in the game I love. Last year, I was scouting for the Dallas Mavericks and the previous three years, I was an NBA scout for the Boston Celtics," he explained. "I was actually looking forward to being a head coach or assistant coach in the NBA this season but like I said, it's a business that have a lot of people involved and wanna stay involved."

Delonte West #13 and LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers look on against the Orlando Magic in Game One of the Eastern Conference Finals during the 2009 Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena on May 20, 2009 in Cleveland, Ohio(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

After a run-in with the authorities and a stay in recovery, Delonte also experiences financial difficulties. He was detained in Florida last year after a drunken run-in with the law. The former basketball guard was detained by Boynton Beach police in Florida. The 38-year-old is accused of pounding on the lobby doors of the Boynton Beach police department while yelling obscenities at the officers. At the time of the confrontation and arrest, Delonte was also reportedly in possession of an open can of beer and an open bottle of vodka. Delonte allegedly began going down his trousers as if to get something after setting the open alcohol containers down on the sidewalk outside the police station. One of the responding police officers is said to have tased Delonte right away after that.