Minor league basketball lost a legendary figure earlier in the month when John “The Franchise” Strickland, 38, passed away. Strickland, who played for the PBL’s Halifax Rainmen during the 2008-09 and 2009-10 seasons, passed away in his sleep. In his 38 years, 15 of which were spent as a professional basketball player, Strickland touched the lives of countless individuals, including teammates, coaches, fans and even opposing players. The NYC Streetball legend enjoyed success while having fun on the court. Strickland was a CBA All-Star in 2008 and inspired many, including rapper Jay-Z who paid tribute to Strickland in his song, PSA, rapping Strickland’s famous phrase – “finish your breakfast.”
John Strickland Rumors
In September, Strickland was in attendance as hip-hop heads from across the world descended on Yankee Stadium to witness two of the industry’s biggest stars (Jay-Z and Eminem) christen the new baseball stadium’s concert set-up. According to one source, Jay-Z shouted for Strick to stand and take a bow during the performance. Less than one month after the concert, Strickland died from an apparent heart attack at his mother’s home on St. Nicholas Avenue in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan. His death shook the hoops world from Halifax to Hawaii and even LeBron James paid his respects via Twitter.