[#UBLists]: 11 Books Written by NBA Athletes

Did you know that Kobe Bryant released a book last month in October? His new release prompted us to take a look at NBA stars past and present that have written books.

Keep scrolling to read our full list of NBA athletes that have written books.

The Mamba Mentality: How I Play By Kobe Bryant

The first book from the basketball superstar Kobe Bryant—a lavish, deep dive inside the mind of one of the most revered athletes of all time

In the wake of his retirement from professional basketball, Kobe “The Black Mamba” Bryant has decided to share his vast knowledge and understanding of the game to take readers on an unprecedented journey to the core of the legendary “Mamba mentality.” Citing an obligation and an opportunity to teach young players, hardcore fans, and devoted students of the game how to play it “the right way,” The Mamba Mentality takes us inside the mind of one of the most intelligent, analytical, and creative basketball players ever.

Bryant’s detailed accounts are paired with stunning photographs by the Hall of Fame photographer Andrew D. Bernstein. Bernstein, long the Lakers and NBA official photographer, captured Bryant’s very first NBA photo in 1996 and his last in 2016—and hundreds of thousands in between, the record of a unique, twenty-year relationship between one athlete and one photographer.

The combination of Bryant’s narrative and Bernstein’s photos make The Mamba Mentality an unprecedented look behind the curtain at the career of one of the world’s most celebrated and fascinating athletes. Via Amazon

From the Outside: My Journey Through Life and the Game I Love By Ray Allen

From the Outside: My Journey Through Life and the Game I Love by [Allen, Ray, Arkush, Michael]

The record-holding two-time NBA champion and recently inducted hall-of-famer reflects on his work ethic, his on-the-court friendships and rivalries, the great teams he’s played for, and what it takes to have a long and successful career in this thoughtful, in-depth memoir.

Playing in the NBA for eighteen years, Ray Allen won championships with the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat and entered the record books as the original king of the three-point shot. Known as one of the hardest-working and highest-achieving players in NBA history, this most dedicated competitor was legendary for his sharp shooting. From the Outside, complete with a foreword by Spike Lee, is his story in his words: a no-holds-barred look at his life and career, filled with behind-the-scenes stories and surprising revelations about the game he has always cherished.

From the Outside is the portrait of a gifted athlete and a serious man with a strongly defined philosophy about the game and the right way it should be played—a philosophy that, at times, set him apart from colleagues and coaches, while inspiring so many others, and lead to the most pivotal shot of his career: the unforgettable 3-pointer in the final seconds of Game 6 of the 2013 NBA finals against the San Antonio Spurs. Throughout, Allen makes clear that success in basketball is as much about what happens off the court as on, that devotion and commitment are the true essence of the game—and of life itself. Via Amazon

A Father First: How My Life Became Bigger than Basketball By Dwayne Wade

Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat is one of the superstars of the NBA—and a Gold Medal winner at the Bejing Olympics—but he’s A Father First.  In this moving and triumphant memoir, Wade shares his inspiring thoughts about fathers and sons, writing poignantly about the gratifying responsibilities of being a single dad to his two sons, Zaire and Zion, while recounting his own growing up years and his memorable rise to the top echelon of professional basketball. Via Amazon

Got to Give the People What they Want: True Stories and Flagrant Opinions from Center Court By Jalen Rose

Got to Give the People What They Want: True Stories and Flagrant Opinions from Center Court by [Rose, Jalen]

One of the most outspoken and original voices in sports sounds off while revealing his incredible life story.
 
Jalen Rose has never been quiet.  Not as a kid growing up in Detroit in the 70’s and 80’s.  Not as the brash, trash-talking leader of the legendary “Fab Five” at the University of Michigan.  Not as the player under the stewardship of Hall of Famers Larry Bird, Isiah Thomas and others throughout his 13-year NBA career.  And certainly not as a commentator and analyst on ABC/ESPN and Grantland. In Got to Give the People What They Want, no topic is off limits.

Honest, unfiltered, unbiased.  Raw, refreshing, real.  This colorful collection of stories and opinions about basketball and life gives people the kind of insight and understanding they don’t get anywhere else in the sports world. Via Amazon

Life Is Not an Accident: A Memoir of Reinvention By Jay Williams

Life Is Not an Accident: A Memoir of Reinvention by [Williams, Jay]

This big-hearted memoir by the most promising professional basketball player of his generation details his rise to NBA stardom, the terrible accident that ended his career and plunged him into a life-altering depression, and how he ultimately found his way out of the darkness.

Ten years ago, Jay Williams was at the beginning of a brilliant professional basketball career. The Chicago Bulls’ top draft pick—and the second pick of the entire draft—he had the great Michael Jordan’s locker. Then he ran his high-performance motorcycle head-on into a light pole, severely damaging himself and ending his career.In this intense, hard-hitting, and deeply profound memoir, Williams talks about the accident that transformed him. Sometimes, the memories are so fresh, he feels like he’ll never escape the past. Most days, he finds a quiet peace as a commentator on ESPN and as an entrepreneur who can only look back in astonishment at his younger self—a kid who had it all, thought he was invincible, and lost everything . . . only to gain new wisdom. Via Amazon

No Malice: My Life In Basketball By Metta World Peace

No Malice: My Life in Basketball or: How a Kid from Queensbridge Survived the Streets, the Brawls, and Himself to Become an NBA Champion by [World Peace, Metta, Dempsey, Ryan]

Metta World Peace knows what it means to be both the hero and the villain. In his 17-season professional basketball career, he’s darted back and forth between extremes, taking on the roles of youthful phenom, league-wide disgrace, All-Star, unlikely international ambassador, and fan favorite. Along the way, there have been awards, teammate rifts, an NBA championship trophy, plus a name change or two. It’s more than the guy born Ronald William Artest, Jr. might have imagined for himself as a kid growing up in Queens. In No Malice, World Peace speaks candidly about his life on and off the court, from his difficult upbringing, to his time as a star athlete and budding math major at St. Johns; from the infamous “Malice at the Palace” brawl in Detroit, where he earned one of the lengthiest suspensions the NBA has ever handed down, to his sunnier days as a Los Angeles Laker. World Peace also opens up on such diverse subjects as his forays into business and entertainment, the truth behind his volatile, unbelievable antics which have puzzled fans and team management alike, as well as his outspoken advocacy for mental health awareness. No topic is off the table, making this a must-read for hoops fans in Indianapolis, LA, Chicago, China, and any place in between. Via Amazon

God and Starbucks: An NBA Superstar’s Journey Through Addiction and Recovery By Vin Baker

God and Starbucks: An NBA Superstar's Journey Through Addiction and Recovery by [Baker, Vin, Layden, Joe]

An astonishing memoir of redemption—the moving story of a former top NBA player who miraculously rebounded from a monumental fall thanks to hard work and his deep, transformative faith.

Sixteen years ago, Vin Baker was an NBA All-Star, an Olympic Gold medalist, and a multimillionaire. While he excelled on the court, Vin harbored a dark secret: a dependency on drugs and alcohol that began after the clean-cut preacher’s son turned pro. Eventually becoming a full-blown yet functional alcoholic, Vin convinced himself he played better under the influence—until his addiction cost him his basketball career, his fortune, and his health.

But Vin’s story isn’t a tragic fall from grace. It is a joyous tale of salvation. For Vin, hitting rock bottom was a difficult yet transformative experience that led him to renew his relationship with God and embrace life in a rich and fulfilling new way. Today the manager of a Starbucks and a youth minister, Vin has found more security and happiness in his ordinary working life than in all his years in the glamorous world of professional basketball.

God and Starbucks is a wise and unflinching look at the real dangers of addiction and the importance of taking charge of your life with meaning and purpose. It’s a powerful memoir about reaching the top and beginning again from the bottom—an inspiring personal tale of humility and grace that reminds us what is truly important in our lives. Via Amazon

Mycroft and Sherlock By Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Fiction)

Mycroft and Sherlock by [Abdul-Jabbar, Kareem, Waterhouse, Anna]

The new novel by NBA All-Star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, starring brothers Mycroft and Sherlock Holmes.

It is 1872, and a series of gruesome murders is the talk of London. Mycroft Holmes–now twenty-six and a force to be reckoned with at the War Office–has no interest in the killings; however his brother Sherlock has developed a distasteful fascination for the macabre to the detriment of his studies, much to Mycroft’s frustration.

When a ship carrying cargo belonging to Mycroft’s best friend Cyrus Douglas runs aground, Mycroft persuades Sherlock to serve as a tutor at the orphanage that Douglas runs as a charity, so that Douglas might travel to see what can be salvaged. Sherlock finds himself at home among the street urchins, and when a boy dies of a suspected drug overdose, he decides to investigate, following a trail of strange subterranean symbols to the squalid opium dens of the London docks. Meanwhile a meeting with a beautiful Chinese woman leads Mycroft to the very same mystery, one that forces him to examine the underbelly of the opium trade that is enriching his beloved Britain’s coffers.

As the stakes rise, the brothers find that they need one another’s assistance and counsel. But a lifetime of keeping secrets from each other may have catastrophic consequences…Via Amazon

Shaq Uncut: My Story By Shaquille O’Neal

Shaq Uncut: My Story by [O'Neal, Shaquille]

You know him by any number of names, and chances are you know all about his legendary basketball career: Shaquille “Shaq” O’Neal is a four-time NBA champion and a three-time NBA Finals MVP. After being an All-American at Louisiana State University, he was the overall number one draft pick in the NBA in 1992. In his 19-year career, Shaq racked up 28,596 career points (including 5,935 free throws!), 13,099 rebounds, 3,026 assists, 2,732 blocks, and 15 All-Star appearances.

These are statistics that are almost as massive as the man himself. His presence-both physically and psychologically-made him a dominant force in the game for two decades.

Shaq is famous for his playful, and at times, provocative personality. He is, literally, outsize in both scale and persona. Whether rapping on any of his five albums, challenging celebrities on his hit television show “Shaq Vs.,” studying for his PhD or serving as a reserve police officer, there’s no question that Shaq has led a unique and multi-dimensional life. And in this rollicking new autobiography, Shaq discusses his remarkable journey, including his candid thoughts on teammates and coaches like Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Phil Jackson, and Pat Riley. Via Amazon

In My Skin: My Life On and Off the Basketball Court By Brittney Griner (WNBA)

In My Skin: My Life On and Off the Basketball Court by [Griner, Brittney, Hovey, Sue]

Hailed by ESPN as the world’s most famous female basketball player, Brittney Griner, the dunking phenom and national sensation who is shattering stereotypes and breaking boundaries, now shares her coming-of-age story, revealing how she found her strength to overcome bullies and to embrace her authentic self.

Brittney Griner, the No. 1 pick in the 2013 WNBA Draft, is a once-in-a-generation player, possessing a combination of size and athleticism never before seen in the women’s game. But “the sport’s most transformative figure” (Sports Illustrated) is equally famous for making headlines off the court, for speaking out on issues of gender, sexuality, body image and self-esteem.

In her heartfelt memoir, she reflects on painful episodes in her life and describes how she came to celebrate what makes her unique—inspiring lessons she now shares. Filled with all the humor and personality Griner has become known for, In My Skin is more than a glimpse into one of the most original personalities in sports; it’s also a powerful call to readers to be true to themselves, to love who they are on the inside and out. Via Amazon

We Matter: Athletes and Activism By Etan Thomas

We Matter: Athletes and Activism (Edge of Sports Book 4) by [Thomas, Etan]

Featuring interviews by former NBA player Etan Thomas with over fifty athletes, executives, media figures, and more–and interwoven with essays and critiques by Thomas–We Matter shares the personal tales and opinions of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Russell, Dwyane Wade, Russell Westbrook, Steve Kerr, Oscar Robertson, Mark Cuban, Michael Bennett, Carmelo Anthony, Derrick Rose, Swin Cash, Alonzo Mourning, Chris Webber, Jemele Hill, Anquan Boldin, Jamal Crawford, Juwan Howard, Ray Jackson, Shannon Sharpe, James Blake, John Carlos, Laila Ali, Michael Eric Dyson, Joakim Noah, Eric Reid, Adam Silver, Soledad O’Brien, John Wall, Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, Bradley Beal, Tamika Catchings, Curtis Conway, Harry Edwards, Chris Hayes, Chamique Holdsclaw, Scoop Jackson, Bomani Johnes, Shaun King, Jimmy King, Ted Leonsis, Thabo Sefolosha, Ilyasah Shabazz, Torrey Smith, Kenny Smith, Michael Smith, David West, Michael Wilbon, Jahvaris Fulton (brother of Trayvon Martin), Emerald Snipes (daughter of Eric Garner), Allysza Castile (sister of Philando Castile), Valerie Castile (mother of Philando Castile), and Dr. Tiffany Crutcher (sister of Terence Crutcher).

This volume will be an inspiration for many different people: sports junkies; young readers who need words of encouragement from their favorite athletes; parents seeking positive messages for their children; activists who want to hear athletes using their voices to address social justice; and schools that need motivational material for their students. Click here to buy.

Be sure to check these books out today!

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