Former NBA player Craig Hodges knows what it’s like to speak out on social issues, and knows the impact that it could have on a career. Hodges, who wrote a letter to then president George H. Bush about the plight of African-Americans back in 1992 during a visit to the White House to celebrate the Bulls winning a NBA title, was cut from the Bulls shortly thereafter. Hodges would never play in the NBA again. At the time, Hodges was still a productive player. While he was not a star, he was a guy who could play.
He was a three-point sniper, who won three consecutive 3-point shooting contests from 1990-92. Sadly, Hodges knows all too well about what free agent QB Colin Kaepernick might be experiencing.
Kaepernick is having a hard time finding a job in the NFL. The reason could be sitting during the national anthem last season, and standing up against the oppression of minorities in America. Hodges applauds everything Kaepernick is doing in the community and his message. “When I look a Colin Kaepernick doing what he is doing on his own, that’s cool because now you have the safety net. Not just the safety net of social media, but you have social media that can tell people about the struggle that you’re going about,” Hodges told Paul Gant.
Unfortunately for Kaepernick, Hodges believes the 29-year-old QB is being blackballed. “No doubt, man. You see it happening already. In that’s the whole thing that silence is violence, silence s acquiescing. So, as it continues in my guestimation, they’ll continue to try to downplay the fact that nobody is picking him up, and the closer it gets to the season nobody will pick him up,” Hodges said. “Pretty soon they’ll be a star on the horizon who has the media’s attention and pretty soon it will be ‘man, what happened to Colin Kaepernick.’ Then, at that point in time, you’re out of the league.”
Hodges is concerned that if Kaepernick were to miss a year in the NFL that his career could be over. “That’s the problem I faced, but I think basketball is easier to be out a year or two and still come back and play,” explained Hodges.
It would be sad to see Kaepernick’s career end this way. Many quarterbacks have been signed, but many of those quarterbacks do not have the talent or the ability of Kaepernick. Sadly, we might have seen the end of Kaepernick in the NFL.
Make sure to get Craig Hodges’ new book “Long Shot: The Triumphs and Struggles of an NBA Freedom Fighter.”