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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Where Is He Now?

After retiring from the NBA Jabbar took a ten-year hiatus from basketball, returning in 1999. Among his more visible projects during that time, in 1995 he researched and published a book, Black Profiles in Courage. In it he documented the stories of inspirational African Americans: Harriet Tubman of the Underground Railroad, a Moorish slave named Estevanico who discovered Arizona and New Mexico, and others. In the course of his research he spent time at the Fort Apache Indian Reservation near White River, Arizona. He returned to White River in 1999-2000 season to serve as an assistant coach, at Alchesay High School on the reservation. Jabbar accepted only one dollar in compensation for the five-month assignment. He documented the experience in 2000 in a book with Stephen Singular, called Season on the reservation: my sojourn with the White Mountain Apache.

Jabbar, who contributes color commentary to ESPN in Bristol, Connecticut, rejoined the NBA briefly as a coach with the Los Angeles Clippers in 2000. He coached a training session with the Indiana Pacers in 2001, and in 2002 joined the United States Basketball League as the head coach of the Oklahoma Storm. He led the Storm to its first league championship but resigned just a few days later without explanation. Observers suggested that he wished to return to coaching in the NBA.

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