So Sad: A basketball player had an accident while travelling in a train. Read more…..

When a car struck a train last week, Griffin died.

According to a press release from the Harris County medical examiner’s office on Tuesday, former Minnesota Timberwolves forward Eddie Griffin passed away last week in a catastrophic collision involving his sport utility vehicle and a freight train.

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The 25-year-old Griffin, who started his turbulent professional career with the Houston Rockets in 2001, was identified by investigators using dental records.
In March, the Timberwolves waived him.

Beverly Begay, chief investigator for the Harris County Medical Examiner’s office, stated, “The cause of death and manner of death, which also includes toxicology results, are pending.”

After graduating from Seton Hall, Griffin, a five-year veteran and the seventh overall choice in the 2001 NBA draft, struggled with alcoholism. In January, he received a five-game suspension from the league for breaking its anti-drug policy.

“His problems with basketball were never real. Former Timberwolves coach Dwane Casey observed, “He needed more life lessons and unfortunately he was never able to reach his potential.”

The SUV’s driver disregarded a railroad caution, passed past a barrier, and then struck the moving train at around 1:30 a.m. on Friday, according to a complaint from Houston police. According to investigators, the ensuing fire destroyed the SUV and the side of a train that was carrying plastic granules.

The driver’s body was severely charred, and no identification was possible.

Derek S. Hollingsworth, a lawyer who has defended Griffin in criminal cases, said, “I was able this afternoon to get some dental records from the one dentist he had gone to see in Houston, and they were able to use that apparently to positively identify him.”

According to Hollingsworth, he spoke with Griffin’s mother, who expressed her shock at the revelation.

Coach Casey, who spent one and a half seasons with Griffin, said, “Everyone from the top to the bottom of the organization tried to help him.”
“He simply was unable to understand it. It’s a terrible conclusion for a lovely child. He have a lovely heart.”

“It was very, very sad news,” stated Tommy Amaker, who helped Griffin get accepted to Seton Hall and is currently a Harvard student. “Everyone has found it difficult… His mother and family are in my thoughts and prayers.”

Although Casey claimed not to have spoken to Griffin in five or six months, he was aware that Griffin was attempting to regain his fitness over the summer in order to play in Europe the following season.

Casey expressed regret for not getting in touch with Griffin during the previous few months.

This awful news severely saddens the Minnesota Timberwolves organization as a whole. Everyone who knew Eddie will miss him, said the team’s vice president of basketball operations, Kevin McHale. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Eddie’s loved ones.”

Griffin was “like a son to Kevin,” according to Casey. Working with him and mentoring him was something Kevin truly liked.”

Former Minnesota teammate Mark Madsen described Griffin as “one of the best shot blockers and defensive rebounders I’ve ever played with,” as well as a mild-mannered individual. Griffin will be missed, he said.

“Eddie Griffin is someone who was never a super loud or boisterous guy in the locker room, but he was someone who everyone loved in the locker room,” Madsen stated. “We were all really pleased for him when he was performing well on the court. And we were all suffering right there along him while he was.”

Griffin missed numerous workouts, court dates, and suspensions throughout his first two NBA seasons with Houston and New Jersey. In 2003–2004, he was treated for alcoholism at the Betty Ford Center.

According to Hollingsworth, Griffin exhibited kindness and gentleness, which contrasts with the player’s description given in police reports.

“He had a problem with alcohol, and I think that was a medication for him, and I think that led to a lot of issues,” Hollingsworth stated.

Before the 2004 season, Griffin, a forward and center, signed a free agent contract with the Timberwolves. Despite only playing in 13 games the previous season with the Wolves, he was dismissed in March despite demonstrating enough potential as a rebounder and shot-blocker to be signed to an extension.

The Wolves placed Griffin’s locker next to NBA great Kevin Garnett in the hopes that the former MVP could help Griffin get well.

While playing for the Wolves, Griffin occasionally put up huge stats but also had a troubled off-court life. He struck a parked car while out late one night in Minneapolis, leading him to enter a guilty plea to careless driving last season.

The Rockets issued a statement in which they expressed their “devastation and sadness over this terrible tragedy.” Eddie’s family and friends are in our thoughts at this extremely trying time.

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