Jamal Mashburn: The Model Entrepreneur Post Athletic Career

A significant number of ex-NBA players have financial problems, so much so that some of them have been known to become bankrupt within a short period of time following their retirement. This is partly because most NBA players are so focused on their basketball skills and busy lives which makes it difficult for them to spare the time and effort needed to ensure that their finances are fine on their own. As a result, NBA players often entrust their finances to someone else, who may or may not prove to be deserving of the trust placed in both their ethical conduct or their financial skills.

However, it should be noted that most NBA players tend to be big spenders as well, which makes for a poor pairing with the sudden stop in their earnings upon retirement. After all, most people find it difficult to change their established patterns of behavior on short notice, meaning that they can persist in their previous course of action in spite of their changed circumstances. When ex-NBA players are unprepared for the changes that happen upon retirement, this can lead them into serious financial trouble, particularly when combined with the aforementioned problem of entrusting their finances to someone undeserving of their trust.

Regardless, it is important to note that financial problems following their retirement is far from being an inevitable outcome for ex-NBA players, as shown by those who have managed to use their athletic careers as a springboard for other pursuits. One excellent example is Jamal Mashburn, who has proven himself to be an excellent businessman since his retirement from the NBA in 2006.

Who Is Jamal Mashburn?

For people who are unfamiliar with the name, Jamal Mashburn was a small forward who was known for his high scoring average of 19.1 points per game over the course of his 12 seasons with the NBA.  He started out at the University of Kentucky, where he had a significant role in his team making it to the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament in 1993. Afterwards, Mashburn was drafted by the Dallas Mavericks as the fourth pick in the 1993 NBA draft, where he played between 1993 and 1997 until he was traded to the Miami Heat in 1997 for no fewer than three players.

There, he played until 2000 when he was traded to the Charlotte Hornets, where he continued playing until the New Orleans Hornets traded him to the Philadelphia 76ers in 2005 because of his right knee problems. Unfortunately, Mashburn’s knee never recovered, meaning that he chose to retire in 2006 when the Philadelphia 76ers decided to waive him. Although he never managed to win a NBA championship, Mashburn did manage career averages of 19.1 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 4.0 assists per game, which are more than respectable.

Regardless, since Mashburn retired from the NBA, he has remained active. For example, he is an analyst at ESPN, where he uses his accumulated basketball expertise and experience to make sense of what is happening in the NBA. However, it is his business ventures that have created the most interest, not so much because of what he has been investing in but because of the sheer number of things that he has been investing in.

Mashburn is the owner of more than 80 businesses, which include 34 Outback Steak franchises, 37 Papa John’s franchises, and multiple car dealerships situated throughout the state of Kentucky. Furthermore, it is interesting to note that he is a partner in Ol Memorial Stable, which holds the distinction of owning a prospect for the Kentucky Derby named Buffalo Man, along with some of his acquaintances. Summed up, Mashburn has proven himself to be a formidable businessman, which is something that more athletes should emulate.

How Did Jamal Mashburn Become So Successful?

Mashburn has stated that he started out as someone with interests beyond basketball. In part, this was because he dislikes the stereotype of athletes who can do nothing but play their particular sport, meaning that he was resolved to avoid becoming that sort of person. However, it should also be noted that he knew he didn’t want to play basketball until he was 35 or 40, meaning that he was planning to embark on other challenges to keep things interesting even before his retirement from the NBA. Finally, it should be noted that Mashburn’s mother told him that he should have something to fall back on in case his basketball career didn’t work out, which he took to heart by making sure that he could step into another role after his basketball career, though as he put it, he prefers to think of it as something to fall forward into rather than something to fall back on.

Business-wise, Mashburn seems to be someone willing to put in the time and effort needed to inform himself about a particular field before leaping into it. As he put it, he understands the need to start at the basics and then build up his knowledge base, which can seem simple and straightforward but nonetheless possess a profound impact. Combined with his vision, this characteristic makes Mashburn well-suited for investing in a wide range businesses, which could explain a part of his success.

What Does This Mean?

Jamal Mashburn is living testament to the fact that athletes are not doomed to make bad financial decisions. As a result, his mere existence lends support to the NBA’s programs to make sure that their players are on a sound financial footing because he shows that they can succeed.

With that said, Mashburn should be seen as someone to look up to not just for athletes but also for all of us. After all, his vision as well as his ability to pursue that vision is nothing short of inspirational, suggesting that we can do the same so long as we are willing to put in the time and effort. Likewise, his extraordinary skill with more than one field of human endeavor is worthy of respect as well, so much so that we should all strive to broaden our horizons a little more.

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