Jayson Williams Rumors

All NBA Players

Former NBA star turned convicted felon Jayson Williams made an impassioned plea for “another chance” yesterday at a prison re-entry conference organized by Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop. Williams, 46, who spent more than two years in prison in connection with the fatal 2002 shooting of his chauffeur and an unrelated drunken driving charge, said his time in prison was hard, but his life after his 2012 release was “more difficult,“ particularly as he attempted to find a permanent place to live. “People who live in these high-rises,“ he said, gesturing to the skylines of Jersey City and Manhattan behind him, ”who once paid a significant amount of money to watch me play, didn’t want me living next door to them.“
What do you still struggle with now? Jayson Williams: I struggle with the loss of lives. The loss of Mr. Christofi and the loss of my father. An hour doesn’t go by that I don’t think about [the accident], think about how can I replay this as to bring back Mr. Christofi. … And not one person died that night, two people died. My dad had never been in the hospital in 70 years. That’s the ripple effect. I can do the time, but can my father do it? No. Can my kids do it? No. … Because of prison I haven’t seen my kids in years.
What was the hardest part about prison for you? Jayson Williams: Claustrophobia. I was never worried about a human being, I was worried about being claustrophobic. At Rikers Island, they lock the door and you hear it. [Makes a loud slamming noise.] And they double lock it. You can’t see out of the windows — they’re barred up, full of dirt and grime and there’s no light that comes through there. It was August and the walls were sweaty, and you’re locked in a cell.
What’s life been like since you’ve been out? Jayson Williams: It’s been a lot more challenging than I thought. I never imagined I’d be leaving the house at 5:30 in the morning and working 18-hour days. And I think I make it more difficult than it has to be at certain times by trying to save the world. Some days I just save the community, some days I just have to wake up and save myself. But it has to be the other way around. I never understood it on the airplane when people said, ‘Put on your own oxygen mask first,’ and I was like, ‘Why wouldn’t you want to put it on your parents or your kids first?’ You gotta get healthy first before you can truly help somebody.
(Jayson) Williams is back on his size-16 feet in New York, ready to share the lessons he has learned since that fateful day in 2002. He knows some might hesitate to trust a convicted felon or doubt he’s a changed man. But Williams says he doesn’t ask people to believe him. Since he’s been out of prison, Williams spends much of his time speaking to groups about his story. “Just watch me,” he says. “Just watch my actions.” Williams is busier than he could have imagined so soon after being back on this side of the barbed wire. He is the vice president of Gourmet Services International and partnering with Loud Digital Network to host his own online channel. His calendar is filled with speaking engagements and charity events, some several hours away. And his cell phone rings constantly with more requests for his time. “I can’t understand when people go to jail and come back out and don’t wanna tell nobody,” Williams says. “Man, tell somebody how bad this thing is so they don’t have to go there.”
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Since his release in April, his days have been filled with AA meetings, Bible studies (he calls Curtis Martin a spiritual adviser), and regular visits to St. Lucy’s shelter and the Franciska Residence, two housing facilities for HIV/AIDS patients in Jersey City. In other words, he’s in the healing business, though he’s reluctant to give himself that much credit. “About 95 percent of the time I wake up and want to save the world,” says the former Nets center. “I might only save my community in the end. But I can see myself helping people, running a shelter, doing what I’m doing right now — being the best Christian that I can be, and try to help as many people as I can. “God has been good to me. I have my health. I have my family. The best thing is getting up in the morning and submitting myself to whatever He has planned for me today. I’m excited about my life right now.”
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Jayson Williams was released from Rikers Island a little more than a week ago, and in his first interview outside of jail, he said the solidarity helped straighten out a life in ruins. “That’s what prison did for me, it isolated me, you know, it polished me up like a stone,” Williams told FOX 5 in an interview that’s airing on Thursday. “(Jail) sent me back out because I’m going to tell you something, if it wasn’t for prison, I was in a bad way.”
Jayson Williams, fresh out of Rikers Island, wasn’t invited to Monday night’s ceremony celebrating the Nets’ final game in New Jersey. But the former All-Star, who dominated the glass in the late ’90s, clearly hasn’t lost his love for the franchise that harbored his best basketball years. After prison and rehabilitation, the New Jersey resident is clearly eager to rekindle a relationship with the Nets — even if the team isn’t ready. “I don’t think there is a person who loves the Nets as much as I do — from our fans, all the employees in the arenas, the front office personnel and the owners,” Williams said through his longtime friend and manager, Akhtar Farzaie. “I will always be loyal to our fans and the Nets.”
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Troubled ex-New Jersey Nets star Jayson Williams bounced out of Rikers Island yesterday after serving eight months for a Manhattan DWI. The Bible-thumping Williams, 44 — whose religious transformation behind bars earned him the nickname “The Moses of Rikers” — says he wants to live a straight life. “I am eager to see my daughters, my mother and siblings and make amends for what they’ve been through,” the ex-hoops star said in a statement. “Start my life over with God being first and in the center of everything I do.”
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Retired NBA star Jayson Williams has been released from Rikers Island jail after serving eight months of his one-year sentence for drunken driving. A Rikers spokeswoman says Williams was freed Friday. The former New Jersey Nets player drove his SUV into a tree in lower Manhattan in 2010. That happened a week after he accepted a plea deal stemming from the 2002 shotgun death of a limo driver in his New Jersey mansion.
Despite the lingering bitterness, Adams said she would consider a sitdown with her brother’s killer. “Anything is possible,” she said. “I’m a Christian.” Williams, who turned 44 on Rikers Island in February, is finishing a DWI sentence for a January 2010 car wreck — one of many lows that followed his accidental Valentine’s Day shooting of Gus Christofi. The former St. John’s star did his city time after serving just 18 months in a plea bargain deal for the shocking slaying inside his $8 million New Jersey mansion. “He got away with murder,” said Adams, her voice firm and even. “Eighteen months. What can I say? He did what he did. I don’t know how he could live with himself. I couldn’t.”
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EX-NBA All-Star Jayson Williams, after surviving a decade of self-destruction, could find freedom and forgiveness in the same week. The jailed jock, who fatally shotgunned a New Jersey limo driver in 2002, is set for release Friday from Rikers Island — and the victim’s sister is ready to make peace. “If he changed his ways in prison, if I believed he really does feel some sort of remorse, I could forgive him,” Andrea Adams told the Daily News from her Somerville, N.J., diner. “But he hasn’t shown me any remorse in all the times I’ve seen him in court.”
Prior to moving to New York’s prison, Williams was paroled from a five-year term in New Jersey for crimes related to the death of Costas “Gus” Christofi in Alexandria Township a decade ago. On Feb. 14, 2002, Christofi was hired to drive Williams’ guests from a restaurant to Williams’ “Who Knew” estate in Alexandria. While giving a tour of the mansion, Williams picked up a loaded shotgun, flipped it up and it went off. Christofi was hit in the chest at close range and died within minutes. Williams then tried to make it look like Christofi had killed himself. Williams disposed of his bloody clothes and jumped into his pool to clean himself off. He also instructed his guests as to what to say to police.
Retired NBA star Jayson Williams is preparing to move from a prison in New Jersey’s farmlands to New York’s Rikers Island. Williams will be transferred from Mid-State Correctional Facility in Wrightstown next Friday after he finishes an 18-month sentence for aggravated assault. From there, he’ll begin serving a one-year sentence for driving while intoxicated in New York City. The 43-year-old drove his SUV into a tree in lower Manhattan a week after he accepted a plea deal stemming from the shotgun death of a limo driver in his New Jersey mansion in 2002.
In a Nets locker room filled with zany personalities, he was the voice of reason. When Rick Mahorn and Jayson Williams would take turns teasing Armen for his wardrobe or his Gumby haircut, Gilliam would smile and ignore them. When Derrick Coleman uttered his now infamous “Well whoop-dee-damn-do” line after Kenny Anderson blew off practice and headed for a strip club, Armen would roll his eyes at his young, immature teammates.
Somehow, in between the first trial and his more recent legal troubles, (Jayson) Williams found the time to record a reality show … er, movie, except it’s still called a show. Behold the trailer for “Off Track: The Reality Show Movie,” a rambling set of interviews in which Williams travels the country on a luxury train and interviews old friends like NBA stars Charles Oakley and Anthony Avent (sporting the greatest hat I’ve ever seen) and pop stars like Joey McIntyre of New Kids on the Block and Chris Kirkpatrick of ‘N Sync. If those names don’t make you buy a copy, then the rudimentary train animations in the trailer certainly will. “Off Track” definitely looks like it provides as many laughs as any reality show movie project starring a convicted felon. Would you like to see Williams try to ride a horse? Or fly a plane? Or smack Anthony Avent in the face? Then you’re in luck. The film is available for purchase on Amazon.com. As the product description says, “The only thing that will not go off track during this hilarious laugh out loud reality series are the wheels of the train.” My sides are already splitting!
“I’d made compromises, given up my own goals and dreams, forgotten my own gifts or talents, lost the ability to laugh. I carried the baggage of a bad marriage. I had to ease that. Think of my own life and relationships. Can’t forever stay stuck. Your husband blazing his own trail doesn’t mean you stop your world because he’s more important. “First days are tough. You’re stuck, unhappy, no joy. But then it’s, ‘What would life be if I didn’t have this relationship?’ Admit you’re in a bad place. Evaluate the stress. Do you really need to keep it? I had a sample group go through my exercises.”
Inspiraional speaker Tanya Young Williams, ex-wife of one-time basketball hotshot Jayson Williams — who reportedly attempted suicide, was a bad boy, fatally “accidentally” shot his limo driver Costas Christofi in 2002, currently residing in prison — is out with the self-help workbook, “I’m Tired! Carry Your Own S#!T!” Subhead: “Oops, I mean bags.” Subsubhead: “A 7 Day Journey to Peace, Passion & Purpose.” About its inelegant title: “I went back and forth with that. If it loses some audience, I thought, ‘Well, this is for real.’ With him I was in a negative situation. Physically, emotionally tired. So I needed to help myself and others by lightening our load on a fast track. A detailed tool for how I crawled out of anxiety. “I wrote what I felt. I started two years ago with pen and pencil when I filed for divorce. It’s no memoir. I offer exercises I’d done for years to combat trials and stress.
A chastened Jayson Williams admitted Friday he was driving drunk when he slammed his SUV into a tree, capping years of legal and personal problems with a guilty plea that adds more time behind bars for the already imprisoned former NBA star. His voice sometimes unsteady, Williams apologized to his family and said he was working to rebuild his life as he pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated in the Jan. 5 crash. His one-year sentence — the maximum for the misdemeanor offense — will follow the five-year prison term he’s serving in New Jersey for accidentally shooting and killing a limo driver. “It seems excessive, but it’s a small price to pay if it helps to deter drunk driving,” Williams, 42, said in a Manhattan court. “I’ll be the poster child for that if it’s going to save lives.”