NBA star John Wall has endured a number of setbacks, both professional and personal, over the past few years. In 2019, the former All-Star ruptured his Achilles tendon. The injury caused him to miss the rest of that season and during the following year due to rehab. To make matters worse, in 2020, Wall was traded from his longtime team, the Washington Wizards, to the Houston Rockets. Those occurrences, as well as the deaths of his mother and grandmother, impacted Wall’s mental health and lead to the electrifying playmaker‘s contemplation of suicide.
Wall, now a Los Angeles Clipper, recently spoke on the downward spiral he was in and credits therapy with helping him cope with the adversity and tragedies within his life. “Darkest place I ever been,” he said when asked about his time away from the court. “At one point in time, I thought about committing suicide. My mom being sick. My mom passing. My grandma passed a year later. […] Find a therapist. You know a lot of people think, ‘I don’t need help. I can get it through it at any time.’ But, you got to be true to yourself and find out what’s best for you.”
Wall is not the first NBA player to be open about his struggles with mental health. Brooklyn Nets forward Ben Simmons and Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love have also spoken publicly about seeking out therapy and counseling in times of emotional crisis. The NBA as a whole has also taken measures to promote education and resources surrounding mental health, with the league adopting new rules for all players and teams in 2019.
Watch John Wall open up about his battle with mental health below.
If you’re thinking about suicide, are worried about a friend or loved one, or would like emotional support, contact the 24-hour National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by dialing 988.