Tuesday, April 12th, 2011 at 10:43 am  |  26 responses

Vin Baker’s Amazing Speech

Video: Vin Baker, All-Star-turned-ninth grade coach, rallies his troops.

edited by Tzvi Twersky | filmed by Jesse Burke

Personal life in shambles, Vin Baker’s NBA career ended in 2006 on a disappointing note. Five years later, Baker is well on the way to putting his life back together. Right now, in part, that means coaching the ninth grade team at his alma mater, Old Saybrook High School in Connecticut.

“I want young people to understand that you have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others,” Baker says in the newest issue of SLAM, SLAM 148.  “You have to take care of yourself spiritually, emotionally and physically. It’s just that simple.”

During halftime of a February game, with photographer Jesse Burke in the house to shoot Baker for the magazine, the four-time All-Star “had to get all Knute Rockne” on his players, verbally cajoling the ninth graders to step up their game in the second half.

“You guys got to ride for each other.” Baker implored his kids. “I can not play for you today, I can’t.”

Be sure to enjoy the rest of this mind-blowing video, and check for the full feature on Vin Baker in SLAM 148 and on SLAMonline tomorrow here.

  • Add a Comment
  • Share
  • RSS

Tags: , , ,

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    I’d hate to see Vin if his squad was down 20 instead of being tied at the half…..love this! For a high school squad…there’s a bunch of small dude’s on that team.

  • http://www.fiba.com Darksaber

    How cool is it to have a former Nba All-Star coaching your team?
    Way to go Vin, tell them boys!

  • Erik Franke

    That is a pretty intense speech for 9th graders, but that red head #15 at the end with the goggles is pretty intimidating.

  • davie

    well that was interesting…

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    One of the best things I’ve ever watched. This is Vin Baker!

  • http://jaredmintzisthetruth.blogspot.com Jared

    really? him telling them he cant play for them today is inspiring? i was watching waiting for the amazing speech to come…average at best. As a University of Hartford Alum who was actually in the intramural gym shooting around with Vin right before he made his “comeback” with the Knicks I fully support this man and am so glad he’s doing well, but I was waiting for Al Pacino Any Given Sunday on this clip.

  • K.a.

    He got game alum and a jumpman guy!


    I was more expecting James Caan’s “The Program” type speech

  • Maurice Bobb

    Vin Baker!

  • logues

    did anyone else catch one of the kids saying “he’s such a dick” at 3:50? listen real closely, maybe there saying something else who knows

  • http://slamonline.com Yknot

    Then Glen Big Dog Robinson comes in and goes off for 30 in the second half to lead Old Saybrook to victory!

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Vin Baker doesn’t look like he’s working with a whole lot of talent on that 9th grade squad.


    He’ll be a good coach at a tiny college one day.

  • Anthony

    lol wheres the brothas on that sqaud….

  • http://www.slamonline.com Nima Zarrabi

    Glad to see Vin doing better. Looking forward to reading the piece on him in SLAM.

  • RedRum

    erm… he sounds loaded…

  • JoeMaMa


  • ClydeSays

    Just glad he’s doing something worthwhile with his time…

  • The Latvian

    What exactly was so amazing about his speech? I’ve heard a variation of this speech hundreds of times from coaches in grade school to college… Glad that he’s doing well, but stop creating headlines that totally misrepresent the actual content.

  • burnt_chicken

    It’s wonderful for Slam to be shining the light on a old head getting his life back on track. For every Antoine Walker, there’s a Vin Baker. Good on him! and good on Slam.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Chris Bosh Sr.
    Great piece.
    Great, great story.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    *Baker’s Life is a great piece, great story.*

  • Oliverballer

    And guess what???? They Loose The game..

  • 2dope

    @eboy. It’s Old Saybrook CT. Of course they’re undersized. It’s, for the most part, a wealthy shoreline community in New England. Good to see Vin Doing well though. He’s a good dude.

  • http://www.t00nish.com Grant

    Damn, did they really lose Oliverballer? Goddamn that sucks.

  • Edgar

    How the game ends?