Since choking his then coach, P.J. Carlesimo, in December 1997 (an incident which led to a season-long suspension in 1997-98), Sprewell vowed to make people forget that incident. And for the most part he did, with his solid on-court play with the New York Knicks and Minnesota Timberwolves from 1998 thru 2004.
After playing a key role in helping the Wolves reach the Western Conference finals in 2004, Minnesota looked to extend his contract that Fall. They proposed a 3-year, $21 million extension. The $7 million average annual salary was below what he was making at the time, but more than a fair offer for a 34-year old NBA player clearly past his prime. Sprewell declined the offer, absurdly exclaiming that he had “a family to feed.”
Sprewell would receive no other serious offers, and thus hasn’t played in the NBA since the ’04-’05 season.
Given his most recent financial hardships, it appears that Spree could have used an extra $21 million.
Former NBA star Latrell Sprewell's home is up for foreclosure and his yacht sold at auction to help pay off the $1.3 million he owes on the boat, according to court filings.
RBS Citizens NA, or Citizens Bank, filed a foreclosure suit last week in Milwaukee County for the $405,000 home Sprewell bought in the Milwaukee suburb of River Hills in 1994.
In court documents, the bank said Sprewell owed $295,138 in outstanding payments plus interest.
Sprewell failed to make his mortgage payments of $2,593 per month from September 2007 to January 2008, the documents said.
Spree’s utterly foolish decision in the Fall of 2004 is the gift that keeps on giving.
As a result, he is the first recipient of the “Sports Einstein” Lifetime Achievement Award.