This is not the kind of “welcome to the NBA” moment players want to have.
Last year during his rookie season in the Bay Area, Jordan Bell lived with his girlfriend but they had to move because of a stalker around his place, something he had discussed before. However, on Monday after practice, Bell laid out the details as reported by Drew Shiller of NBC Sports Bay Area, and it’s disturbing.
“I kept seeing him everyday. He was standing outside, wearing glasses, had a backpack,” Bell told reporters. “I’m thinking he’s just a fan who wants an autograph. But he was there every single day … for a week, every day. I did it (signed an autograph) because I had just got here and I wasn’t signing autographs like crazy.
“And then, my girlfriend was walking our dogs outside and he came behind her (Bell mimics somebody putting his hands on her shoulder) and was like, ‘Yo, is Jordan here?’ And she was freaked out, and it’s dark, she’s by herself. … He was bigger than her, so she was frightened. She said he looked like a creep.
“So I had to move.”
Bell said he is still in a legal squabble with the original building because he had to get out of his lease to move. He moved to what he described as a “quieter” area and has not had the same issue.
NBA players — and celebrities in general — make a trade-off of some level of privacy for the money and fame that come with their jobs (where precisely that line is and should be is an occasional matter of debate). However, some disturbed people take things a step too far, and it forces players to put up more of a wall between them and the fans just because they want to keep themselves and their families safe. It’s unfortunate, but it’s also the reality of the world we live in.