Back in the day, Javaris Crittenton was one of the most promising youngsters on the Los Angeles Lakers roster. He was never a star or anything even remotely resembling a difference maker, and his statistics never really jumped out at anyone, but his potential for greatness seemed to be off the charts.
Crittenton just had a certain quality about him that made it feel as though he was destined to do big things in the league.
When the Lakers traded for Pau Gasol in 2008, it came as no surprise that he was a part of the deal. Whereas nobody really knew what to expect out of Marc Gasol (whose rights were included), most figured that Crittenton would immediately leave his mark on a young Grizzlies squad.
He didn’t. After an unsuccessful stint with Memphis, Crittenton bounced around to the Washington Wizards and Charlotte Bobcats with similarly forgettable results. Heck, if not for his involvement in the infamous Gilbert Arenas gun scandal, most wouldn’t have even known he was in the league post-2009.
In August of 2011, Crittenton was charged with the murder of Jullian Jones, a 22-year-old mother of four. While he has consistently denied any involvement in the crime, Atlanta police made it clear that they think Crittenton mistakenly hit Jones while attempting to go after someone who robbed him.
With all that’s gone wrong in his life, you would think that Crittenton would just sit inside all day and stare blankly at the walls.
You would think wrong.
This past weekend, he was out in Hollywood, partying hard like it's nothing.
This weekend, Javaris still maintained his innocence ... telling us, "Legal issues ... I don't usually speak on ... but standing right here before you ... thank god for that ... innocent man."
Javaris says he's still training for the NBA and believes a comeback is in his future.
There was one other bizarre moment in our encounter --when we asked Javaris one of our patented random questions: "If you had to be on a deserted island for the rest of your life, would you rather be alone or with someone you hate?"
Crittenton's response -- "I would choose to be alone ... if you're with the wrong person, they'll drive you crazy ... and they'll kill you."
If you're with the wrong person, of course.
Regardless of what ultimately happens with his trial, Crittenton will undoubtedly go down as one of the biggest NBA cautionary tales of all time.