The piece features several anecdotes from Miles’ journey to this point, including how the East St. Louis native had a gun pulled on him as a 6th grader, how he almost died riding a Jet Ski at Alonzo Mourning‘s house, how he ended up with a Jordan Brand deal, and how Shaquille O’Neal once jokingly pulled him over on his way to Clippers practice:
I remember one day I was running late for practice, so I was flying down the 405. All of a sudden, I look in the rearview, and I see the flashing lights. This unmarked police truck is right up on me. Tinted windows. Big heavy-duty truck. Woop-woop. I knew I was speeding. So I pull over, and I roll the window down, and I’m reaching over into the glove compartment to get my papers … Then I hear this voice. Big, booming voice.
“WHERE YOU G’WAN, BOY?”
I’m like, Damn, they got the sergeant on me or something? I turn to look out the window, and I can’t even see this dude’s face he’s so big. All I see is his chest.
“I SAID WHERE YOU G’WAN BOY?”
Then he bends down and looks in the window. Big, dumbass grin on his face. It’s Shaq.
Miles goes on to address how he battled depression throughout his stint in the League. When his mother passed away, he “pretty much went insane.”
I would sleep in the daytime then stay up all night drinking wine and smoking weed, just to try to get out of my head. I was paranoid. I had my concealed carry permit, so I had a gun on me at all times. The worst part was that I had people who owed me a lot of money, and I just got to a point where I was seeing red, for real. I felt like I was gonna hurt somebody, or I was gonna wind up in jail.
I know dudes like me aren’t supposed to talk about depression, but I’ll talk about it. If a realmotherfucker like me can struggle with it, then anybody can struggle with it.
Darius eventually hit up his ex-teammate Quentin Richardson for support. The two still live down the street from each other in Florida, and Miles says “it’s 2018 now and he’s alright.”