It’s a story we’ve become all too familiar with. Star professional athletes losing all their earnings. Today’s example also is a story of recovery. 43 year old, former four-time NBA All Star Vin Baker is currently on a very different career path from his time in the NBA.
Baker is currently working for Starbucks in their manager training program. During his time in the L, he earned an estimated $100 million with the Milwaukee Bucks, Seattle Supersonics and other stops. His basketball career ended in 2006 as a member of the Los Angeles Clippers in 2006.
Vin battled alcoholism and a series of financial setbacks that include a failed restaurant venture, losing money on varied investments, suing his accountant for mismanagement and having a home foreclosed on.
Baker has been sober the last four years, he’s newly married and a minister at his father’s church. He was able to obtain the Starbucks job through his relationship with CEO Howard Shultz, the former Seattle SuperSonics owner, who he played for from 1997- 2002.
“In this company there are opportunities for everyone. I have an excellent situation here at Starbucks and the people are wonderful,” he tells the Providence Journal.
Baker hasn’t completely left basketball in his past. Recently his former teammate, Jason Kidd, invited him to work with the Milwaukee Bucks coaching staff during the Las Vegas summer league. One of Baker’s focuses during his time with the young players this summer was to speak with them about managing their financials.
I touch on the topic of relationships made by athletes during their playing days being a source of employment after the final buzzer in my new book, PostGame Pass which is available now on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.