NBPA Announces Mental Health and Wellness Program for Players

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMay 25, 2018

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The National Basketball Players Association announced the launch of a mental health and wellness program for NBA players Friday, according to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today.

Former NBA guard Keyon Dooling, the NBPA Player Wellness Counselor since January, will be joined by a Director of Mental Health and Wellness, per the announcement.

In an article published for the Players' Tribune on May 1, Dooling discussed his post-traumatic stress disorder.

Dooling wrote that he was sexually abused as a child, which led to a stint in a mental institution in 2012 while he was a member of the Boston Celtics.

The mental wellness conversation has recently reached the forefront in the NBA. Cleveland Cavaliers big man Kevin Love and Toronto Raptors star DeMar DeRozan both talked about their experiences in a public service announcement released by the NBA for Mental Health Awareness Month in May:

In March, Love published an article for the Players' Tribune about having a panic attack during a game.

DeRozan spoke with Doug Smith of the Toronto Star in February regarding his struggles with depression and anxiety.

Dooling has been a life coach since retiring from the NBA in 2013.

He is a natural fit to help lead the NBPA's new initiative due to his experience working with NBA and G League players in the field of mental health awareness.