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Former NBA star Kenny Anderson says he was sexually abused as a child

Jul 26, 2013, 1:57 PM EDT

If you remember watching Kenny Anderson playing the game, you remember it was fun.

Best remembered as a Georgia Tech star then a New Jersey Net (although he played for a number of other teams), he wasn’t a great shooter, he gambled a little too much on defense, but he was a playground guy who figured out how to make that style and flair fit in the NBA well enough that he was an All-Star with a 14-year NBA career.

Since he retired after the 2005 season, he’s been pretty quiet (although PBT had him on a podcast earlier this year). Now he’s doing an off-Broadway show in New York and something came out of that which he discussed with SB Nation:

Anderson said he was molested twice as a child. Once by somebody in the youth basketball community (he was very clear it was not one of his AAU or high school coaches).

“I admitted I got molested twice,” Anderson said…

“I don’t think it killed me, like it killed some other kids that’s been molested. You can really take a lot out of a kid for the rest of their lives. I think without the fame, without the basketball celebrity notoriety it might have been more difficult for me….

“The bottom line, if I could help somebody and they see Kenny Anderson got molested and he’s talking about it, now people are going to come out and maybe be able to tell their story. I wasn’t going to do it, but the trigger went off for me and it just had to be done.”

He didn’t tell his mother or anyone for years, his wife only found out three or four years ago.

But with his new autobiography coming out (likely next March) he is starting to talk about it.

In the past year NBA player Keyon Dooling also admitted he had been molested as a youth.

The only way to really help future children from this predatory situation is to shine a light on it — people like Anderson coming out and talking about it. That may help others come forward and talk about it, to shine a light on the perpetrators whoever they are and bring them out in the daylight. Bring them to justice.

And if Anderson’s story helps one person with that, helps them know it’s not their fault and they can talk about this, then it was worth it.

Good on Anderson for taking this step.

  1. jadaruler - Jul 26, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    That must be a tough thing to keep to yourself for so long. Kenny talking about it will definitely help others out there to talk about this.

  2. sackings916 - Jul 26, 2013 at 2:49 PM

    I agree it’s definitely tough! Poor guy. I just wish we could change society in a way where kids or people don’t feel ashamed or scared to say anything so we can start catching these creeps right away and getting them away from our kids!

  3. asimonetti88 - Jul 26, 2013 at 3:50 PM

    This is something that is unforgivable in my opinion! Children are our future and violating them is absolutely disgusting. I’m really glad that Kenny Anderson is speaking about this, it will help push this issue to the forefront. I’m also really glad that he did not allow it to break him and he grew up to be very successful!

  4. sw19womble - Jul 26, 2013 at 4:06 PM

    It can take a long time for people to come to terms with abuse, let alone start to talk about it openly.

    Very glad to hear that Anderson wasn’t too badly affected – and of course kudos for encouraging the discussion.

  5. florida727 - Jul 26, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    I agree with all the above posts. Kudos to Kenny for taking such a bold step and letting people know about what happened to him. Frankly, the easy thing to do would have been to keep it quiet and sweep it under the proverbial rug. Takes courage to let people know what happened and then open yourself up so that others can cite you as an example of how to deal with it. Doing this is what a role model needs to do. Again, major props to Kenny for being willing to open his life up to scrutiny so that someone else might benefit down the road.

  6. dezglobal - Jul 26, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    My friends dad was a child molester.. Worst scum ever. May they all rot in Hell.

    • dezglobal - Jul 26, 2013 at 9:21 PM

      Why would I get a thumbs down? Must be from a child molester.

      • 00maltliquor - Jul 27, 2013 at 1:42 AM

        It’s a sick, sick world man.

  7. northstarnic - Jul 26, 2013 at 7:43 PM

    Brave move. Sorry to hear, but hats off to him for taking this difficult step to make peace with his past.

  8. 00maltliquor - Jul 26, 2013 at 8:15 PM

    Why is there always that ONE hater giving a thumbs down?? How do you even thumb those down??^ Unless you in fact, are a molester yourself…

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