HoopsHype Isaiah Austin rumors

November 7, 2014 Updates

So alone in his room, he’d turn again to what his mother had told him when he lost vision in his eye: “You can make it your excuse or your story.” He’d look to his left arm and see the words from Corinthians facing him, “For we walk by faith and not by sight,” and discover a new meaning that wasn’t about blindness. He’d begin to dream again and to put the same dedication that brought him to the brink of the NBA into those dreams. He became a spokesman for the Marfan Foundation. He began to write a book. He started the Isaiah Austin Foundation to promote Marfan awareness. He distributed thousands of bracelets at Baylor with the words “Dream Again.” And he discovered a different side of basketball as a graduate assistant, mopping sweat off the floor, handing out water bottles and breaking down film with his players. “I never played basketball just so I could make it to the NBA,” Austin says. “I wanted that, of course, but I just loved the game. And now I’ve discovered so much more that I love.” Sports Illustrated

Back in Boston for the beginning of the NBA season, Austin sees Owen on the court before the game and runs over to give him a high-five. There are a dozen boys and girls with Marfan there, many of whom had never met another kid like them before this trip. The Celtics have partnered with the Marfan Foundation this season, and tonight they're honoring Austin with their "Heroes Among Us" award. At a break in the second quarter, Austin walks onto the court. He hears the sweet sound of his name and a more thunderous roar than when Rajon Rondo was introduced in the starting lineup. A crowd of 18,000 is on its feet. Sports Illustrated

November 2, 2014 Updates

“It’s been different,” Austin said about life after basketball. “I don’t wake up every morning and go straight to the gym. I wake up and go straight to class. I’m wiping up sweat at [Baylor] practice now instead of participating in it, so it’s something I have to deal with and it’s a new beginning for me.” Austin has spent the past few months speaking publicly about his experiences and motivating people with Marfan. In a public service announcement on the video screen during Wednesday’s game, Austin alerted parents to potential Marfan symptoms in their children. “I met a lot of families because of Marfan syndrome — a lot of those kids that I’m meeting, they’re just warriors,” he said. “Their strength really inspires me.” Boston Globe

While Austin wears a grin and is grateful to have a new calling, he still struggles with losing basketball and watching his peers make their NBA debuts, fulfilling lifelong dreams. “I’m still getting over it,” said Austin, who was honored by commissioner Adam Silver during the NBA Draft. “I still miss the game every day of my life, but at the same time I still know that I have a different path that I’m taking and a different journey that I’m on. I’m not letting it dwell. I’m moving forward and staying positive.” Boston Globe

October 30, 2014 Updates

Not long after, he tells Mazzeo, he had to decide on a number. He chose No. 21, Isaiah Austin's number at Baylor. "I didn’t tell him," said Cory Jefferson, who wore No. 34 in college. "I just did it. He liked it, just being able to see No. 21 still out there. Like I said, it means a lot more to me now." Wednesday night, the Celtics honored Isaiah Austin for his courage and presented him with a framed No. 21 jersey. And Jefferson playing his first NBA game scored eight points and grabbed two rebounds in nine minutes with Austin watching. NetsDaily

October 29, 2014 Updates
October 27, 2014 Updates
July 23, 2014 Updates

The NBA will take its affiliation with former Baylor Bears star Isaiah Austin a step further than the ceremonial pick they extended him in this year's draft if all goes according to plan. Austin, whose career was cut short when he was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder that affects the heart, has been promised a job by commissioner Adam Silver with the stipulation he complete his undergraduate degree from Baylor, he told TMZ.com. "Right now he's going to have me do a little stuff with NBA Cares, just off-and-on right now until I get a full job," Austin told the website, referring to the league's charity outreach group. ESPN.com

July 12, 2014 Updates
July 7, 2014 Updates

Now that his teammate’s playing days are over, Cory Jefferson wants to honor Isaiah Austin by wearing his jersey number, No. 21, with the Nets. “That was big for me,” Jefferson said. “Just knowing the bond that we built, we got really close over the two years that he was there at Baylor that we played together.” Orlando Sentinel

July 5, 2014 Updates
June 27, 2014 Updates

"The NBA selects: Isaiah Austin," Silver said. Thousands were already on their feet, giving Austin ovation. The slender 7-footer donned a royal-blue NBA lid, dipped his head into his massive right palm for a few seconds, then made his startled way up to the stage. He was crying, and Silver almost was, too. Andrew Wiggins' mother walked right to Isaiah's and embraced her in a huge hug. Austin deserved that moment; it was an accomplishment, a climactic achievement that only six days ago he was hoping to experience. But Austin didn't have a remote clue it would or could be like this. CBSSports.com

"The way they did it was just total class," Drew said. "Anyone watching, if you didn't have a tear in your eye, man, I don't even know. Give the credit to Adam Silver and Greg Shaheen." It was Shaheen, the longtime head of the NCAA Tournament, who quietly helped orchestrate the tribute in the past 72 hours. Silver personally called Austin earlier in the week to invite him and ensure he experienced the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. "We knew we wanted to do something that would allow his dream to come true. He's a special young man," Silver told CBSSports.com. "And it was very difficult for me to maintain my composure up there. It's said that something that was such a big part of his life has been taken away, but he's making the best of a bad situation. That's the best kind of outlook on life. We're proud of Isaiah." CBSSports.com

Word of Austin's condition spread from his parents to his agent to his high school coach and the Baylor coaches. Austin was refereeing games and playing with kids in drills. He had no idea his life had changed forever. He would live like this for only 22 more hours. The decision was made by mom: let him play the game he loves just a little while longer before telling him the awful news. Austin wasn't exerting much energy at the camp as it was. Drew said he was "numb to the news" when he found out. Paul Mills, a Baylor assistant who was working the camp, found out around 8 p.m. He too was gobsmacked. "We wondered if we should pull him off the court. It's over," Mills recalled thinking. "He's never playing basketball again. I remember Isaiah as a seventh-grader, visiting campus, 6-7 tall. He's the only junior high kid I've ever gone to see. You're thinking back to all those instances over the past eight or nine years, and you're about to deliver news that will floor this kid." CBSSports.com

Austin walked into the house, nearly 20 familiar faces waiting, all fighting a droop. His eyes locked on his mother's, who were already welled to tears. His stepfather was holding her, and the reality of why this family reunion was happening slammed him. "No," Austin immediately said. "Please don't tell me what I think you're going to tell me." "I'm sorry, Isaiah," were the first words Lisa could get out. Before she said them, he knew. Doctors told him about the possibility of Marfan in Chicago, at the draft combine. There was no other reason for him to see his family in that house right then and there. They weren't supposed to be in Grand Prairie, not today. It was Saturday, and Noah had a track meet to prepare for. Austin turned his back and began to cry. CBSSports.com

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