Paul Is Dead, His Basketball Career, That Is

Barely a week to go, two prominent NBA players wanting to get back in the NBA was cut by their respective teams. One was Jay Williams and another guy was Paul Shirley. Doesn’t ring a ball, err, bell eh? I am not surprised that you do not know him coz the guy rarely played. (And yes, Shirley is guy.)

But if you frequent ESPN.com/nba past months, you would probably get to follow his journal, aptly titled, “My So-called Career”. The blog segment is his literal journey in the NBA, as he bounces from team to team and countries to countries playing as an import.

Shirley, 28, is one of few ESPN-NBA bloggers slash writers slash contributors. He’s one hell of a blogger. His choice of words, his candidness and his cynicism is as fresh as you can get. He is not the proto-typical writer. Even his failed quest in landing a TV show was dealt upon in his blog. Among other things, he likes to talk music in his blog and with occasional sarcastic say in pop culture, of course sports, TV, cheerleaders, etc.

He temporarily shelved his writing gig at ESPN to focus on his “so-called NBA career”. He figured, he has more years to come when he can write full-time. He contemplated that, him being a writer for ESPN, slightly make him unserious in his playing career and prospective GMs might see his writing gig as a distraction. So in his peak-physical years, the plan was to get in the NBA again. Be it a 12th man again. He doesn’t care either. Unfortunately, he was cut by the Minnesota Timberwolves some days back.

Shirley, 6-10, played in two preseason games for a total of eight minutes. The three-year NBA journey man signed with the Wolves on Oct. 2, 2006. He averaged a strong 7.8 points, 4.2 rebounds in five games with the Wolves’ Las Vegas Summer League team. He previously played at Phoenix Suns, Atlanta Hawks, Chicago Bulls and teams from around the globe.

Him being axed by the Wolves could be a blessing in disguise for ESPN/NBA/Blog followers as it is possible that Shirley would again re-upped with ESPN.com and be a blogger once again. He could possibly drop the ball now and pick up the pen.

But in one question directed to him during a live ESPN chat, if he is to retire now that he’s been axed, he says “I don’t really understand it. I’m only 28. I’m a better player now than I was two years ago. Retirement seems like it would be a poor decision.”

3 thoughts on “Paul Is Dead, His Basketball Career, That Is”

  1. Shirley was one of the first links I put here sa Ballex. He’s a terrific writer, very interesting and funny. He became a little boring though, after that TV show he was working on didn’t push through, and I lost interest after that.

    He doesn’t have to worry about looking for a career post NBA though. As long as he can write like that he’ll be ok.

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