Bobby Jones Rumors

Former Denver Nuggets forward Bobby Jones had been named a finalist for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame before, and four separate times his hopes had been thwarted. “When it doesn’t happen for a couple times, you think, ‘That’s OK, it’s not going to happen,’” Jones said in a recent phone conversation. “I understand that. There’s a lot of great players out there.” But this past spring, Jones, a defensive stopper throughout his 12-year career, finally got the call he wanted to get. It came while driving from his hometown Charlotte to Charleston, with his wife in the car. “My wife was in tears,” Jones said. “I immediately started thinking back on my career, my playing days, and it brought back some really good memories.”
The only negative to his time in Denver was how it ended. Jones, who had to negotiate both epilepsy and a heart condition during his career, was traded to the Sixers in 1978. “Leaving Denver was difficult just because when I went into the office, I got traded and I went to say goodbye to everybody, (and) everybody looked at me like I was a foreigner,” Jones said. “‘What are you doing here? You’re not on our team anymore.’… That was a bittersweet ending.”
Welcome to our three-part retrospective looking back on the career of 76ers legend Bobby Jones, a finalist for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2019 Enshrinement. Over the next few weeks, we’ll examine Jones’ famous defensive prowess, his underrated offensive power, and his redefinition of clutch play. Here’s Part I: Since defense was the calling card of Mr. Bobby Jones, we’ll appropriately address it in the first installment of this series. The man was so enraptured with defense, Jones’ sculpture on Legends Walk at the 76ers Training Complex is of him making a hectic dive to capture a loose ball.
Among the other notable nominees: Sloan’s old friend Johnny “Red” Kerr, Del Harris, Curt Gowdy, Marv Albert, Jim Valvano, Billy Packer, Vlade Divac, Toni Kukoc, the 1936 U.S. Olympic team, Chris Webber, Tim Hardaway, Rip Hamilton, Dale Ellis, Marcus Camby, Muggsy Bogues, Chauncey Billups, Mark Aguirre, Jack Sikma, Ben Wallace, Sidney Moncrief, Bobby Jones, Kevin Johnson, Rudy Tomjanovich, George Karl, Bob Huggins, Cotton Fitzsimmons, Bill Fitch, Rick Adelman, Rollie Massimino and Gene Keady.
The 76ers will unveil a sculpture of Hall of Famer and former team great Julius ‘Dr. J’ Erving on Tuesday at their practice facility in Camden. It will be placed alongside the sculptures of Sixers greats Wilt Chamberlain, Hal Greer, Billy Cunningham, Mo Cheeks and Bobby Jones at the 76ers Legends Walk.
I had a chance to speak with former Huskies Forward Bobby Jones who recently released a documentary made about his life playing basketball overseas. The very first recruit signed by Lorenzo Romar when he took the job at Washington, Jones was picked in the NBA Draft and carved out a career playing in Italy. Although his career in Europe may not be over, the documentary is a revealing look at life outside of the NBA.
The movie which Jones released on July 24th entitled, “Basketball Jones: The Overseas Journey,” chronicles the paths of American players in Europe. Jones came up with the concept for the documentary while playing in Italy. “There’s a big void on what people know about overseas basketball in America,” Jones explained. He did a bulk of the work including coordinating interviews, editing, producing, and coming up with the music for the documentary among other things. “It wasn’t easy but definitely worth it,” Jones said of his passion project. The documentary was Jones’ second attempt at chronicling his journey as a first try was scrapped as he was unhappy with what was made. “I wanted to make sure that the message was the right message.”
I feel even worse for the men/fathers who are in a worse situation than I was in. I was eventually able to resume my normal life (to a certain extent) without any long-term effects. Others fathers aren’t so lucky. Some will lose their jobs, thus not being able to pay their bills. More importantly unable to follow the court ordered child support payments, which will then bring them back to jail and continue an ongoing cycle that is emotionally devastating to both the victim and his/her children. These false accusations are drawing resources and credibility away from women who really are victims of domestic violence and who really need the protection. For someone to falsely accuse another out of anger and vengeance silences the voices of the many real victims. So what’s the moral of the story? Sadly there isn’t one because even if you make all the correct decisions you can still go to jail because (1) you’re a man and (2) more notably because your black. The criminalization of black people in America is alive and well. Please take the time you and fill out this online petition form so it can be sent to the President and your local Congress Representative in your respective state. It will only take 2-3 minutes.
So many scenarios ran across my mind, good and bad, but mainly bad. The first thing was hoping that this horrible news didn’t get into media. I don’t consider myself super famous, but making the papers in Seattle or back in LA and eventually in Europe online wouldn’t be so unrealistic at all. We all know that bad news travels faster than any other news. With the way my brain works, it naturally approaches an unfortunate lesson that I’ve been through and tries to puts a positive spin to sooth my nerves. How so? For example, I imagined the same exact thing happening but instead I was living in the South during the early 1930’s or anytime during slavery for that matter. I wouldn’t be in a county jail waiting for my release. I would for sure have a noose around my neck by now, swinging from a tree like some strange fruit (Billie Holiday reference). Another scenario I came up with was that if this happened on July 2nd (Tuesday) instead of on the 1st (Monday) then I would’ve had to spend not 1, not 2, but 3 nights in jail because it was 4th of July weekend. What better way than to be treated as a low life to ring in our great country’s independence. Another bullet narrowly dodged again. Having to tell my parents what happened and how this injustice resulted in me going to jail was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. There was no way that I could spin this into a positive outlook no matter how hard I tried. This was something I wanted to avoid all together.
There are no words to fully explain the feeling when your human rights are being taken away from you for the first time. When the only thing you have in control of your day-to-day life is to breathe and go to the restroom. During my incarceration, they took all my belongings and I had to wear an overly washed, faded, orange jumpsuit and some recycled underwear. The fact that I didn’t know how many people wore them before me left me feeling disgusted. Six of my new cellmates and me had to walk together in a straight line through many clearances. It seems like every 5 minutes we had to stop and wait until somebody on the other side of the wall unlocked a door so we could continue our stroll to an elevator.
When you factor in a false verbal threat along with false pushing and probably a good acting job on her part, I suppose everything else goes out the window thereafter. The police decided they were going to arrest me and take me to jail just to be on the “safe” side (their words not mine). Sitting in the back seat of that cop car is when it finally dawned on me that all of the good deeds and taking the high road meant absolutely nothing. All of the stereotypes I constantly had to prove people wrong about me, none of that helped me when it mattered the most. My future was left in the hands of three strangers, whom I had never seen in my life but were judging me like they knew me my whole life. It made me feel sick to my stomach. As I sat in the back seat handcuffed, I finally broke down and started crying like a little bitch. I was experiencing the lowest point in my life; I couldn’t help but get emotional.
Bobby Jones: I’d just returned to the States for no more than a week prior, and to Seattle just the day before; I’d driven my car from LA to Seattle. I was going to pick up my daughter for the day when my daughter’s mother decided to start an argument about the type of water guns I gave my daughter the day before to play with in her mini pool. After about 5-7 minutes, she decided to change her mind. She said that I wasn’t going to see my daughter now and to come back with court papers saying otherwise. Once I heard this, I walked back to my car (which was a few steps away) and called 911 to report an incident about a parent going back on an arranged pick up date of a child. As a father, I learned a while ago that in America, we have no leverage/power in child disputes. All I could do in this situation was call the police so they could document the incident and to also put her in contempt possibly. Side note: No parent should just be able to change his or her mind at the last second after agreeing to a pick up visitation. I would understand if the welfare of the child were in danger, but to do it because they know they will not have to face immediate punishment or simply in spite, is just morally wrong. Once she caught onto what I was doing, she went back inside the house and also called 911 as well.
Last week, the likes of Julius Erving, Moses Malone, Charles Barkley, Allen Iverson, Billy Cunningham, Doug Collins, Bobby Jones, Pat Croce, Wali Jones and others converged in a back room of the Wells Fargo Center to pay tribute to Jeff Millman, a 50-year employee of the organization whose jobs varied from ballboy to equipment manager, but whose undeniable fingerprints on the club couldn’t be given a title. The locker room was dedicated to him before the season opener against the Miami Heat, and he was introduced to the near sellout crowd in the first quarter, surrounded by the basketball royalty mentioned above. Millman was battling cancer, and all of those famous athletes whose lives he touched wanted to honor him. And, really, say goodbye.
Jeff Millman touched many people’s lives during a half-century of service to the 76ers. Many of the greatest names in franchise history returned to honor him Wednesday at the Wells Fargo Center against the Miami Heat. Among the former Sixers on hand were Julius Erving, Charles Barkley, Allen Iverson, Moses Malone, Billy Cunningham, Bobby Jones, Darryl Dawkins, and Doug Collins. In a pregame ceremony, the Sixers dedicated their locker room to Millman, a longtime equipment manager who had several jobs with the team over the years. They also honored him with a video tribute.
It has been 29 years since the 76ers won the franchise’s last championship, so on Friday, in a nod to nostalgia, the organization welcomed back members of that 1982-83 team. Julius “Dr. J” Erving, Moses Malone, Bobby Jones, and Earl Cureton attended the Sixers’ home opener at the Wells Fargo Center. This resonated with coach Doug Collins, the No. 1 pick in the 1973 draft and an eight-year Sixer. “It’s good – it brings to mind championships,” said Collins, who became famous in the city for, among other things, tossing alley-oop passes to Erving. “Bobby Jones and I go back to the 1972 Olympics – so, obviously, we got our hearts broken in Munich. I remember playing alongside Julius, trading for Bobby. “It goes back to a great time and a team that set a standard of excellence,” Collins continued. “And that’s what we aspire to at some point in time. So I think that any time you can bring back former guys who set a kind of standard it’s great for our guys to see and for our fans to see.”
But selling the ring from that memorable season? Isn’t that going a bit too far? Jones doesn’t think so. In fact, he said he’s also looking into selling his 1983 ring. “For me, personally, it’s no big deal. I’ve never worn mine,’’ said Jones, who saw Erving last month at a reunion of the 1983 team at the suburban Philadelphia home of then 76ers coach Billy Cunningham. “The older my kids and grandkids get, it’s something that was so long ago. I would sell it. I’m planning to. My son (Matt) is doing research on three companies that do these things.’’
Erving has been on the bad end of financial news prior to this week. It was reported last year a golf club he owned in the Atlanta area was in foreclosure. He had a house in St. George, Utah, that went into foreclosure last year after he had defaulted on a loan, which led Erving telling TMZ the house, valued at $2.23 million, was “substantially underwater.’’ Kohler said Erving has homes in New York, Atlanta and Florida, which is where SCP Auctions officials went to evaluate and pick up the memorabilia Erving is selling. “I wouldn’t think that financially he would be in trouble,’’ said Bobby Jones, Erving’s 76ers teammate from 1978-86. “He’s a smart guy and a very astute businessman. We all make mistakes. But I see him on Dr Pepper commercials, and I’m sure he’s well compensated. . . . I would think that he doesn’t need the stuff (he’s selling) because he has the memories. . . . It would be sad if that wasn’t the case.’’