The Dallas Mavericks owner went on Barstool Sports’ “Pardon My Take” podcast to discuss West’s recovery. West is currently being treated at a drug rehab facility in Florida.
“We had tried to help Delonte before, and it didn’t work out. I don’t think he was ready yet. And then I saw all the pictures and people saying that he was in Dallas, and where he was, I-75 and 635, which is like two miles from my house,” Cuban said. And so I start driving around looking for him and went and hunted down his mom’s phone number. Got ahold of his mom and basically, you know, asked her for his number, and got his number, left a message for him. And, you know, he didn’t call me back for a few days. Then he called me back and I told him, Delonte, don’t move. I’m coming to get you. And that’s what I did.”
Delonte West has struggled for years
West, a former first-round draft pick and Mavericks point guard, has struggled with bipolar disorder, substance abuse, and homelessness for years. But the severity of his situation wasn’t well known until a photo of West panhandling on the side of the road was posted on Twitter. West looks bedraggled and gaunt in the photo — miles away from the athlete he had been.
Cuban tried unsuccessfully for several days to reach West, CBS sports said. When they finally connected, Cuban offered to get West help. They agreed to meet at a gas station. Cuban explains what happened next.
“Went and got him a hotel room, let him sleep it off, went and got him some food, and sat there, waited for his mom to get there, and waited with him,” the “Shark Tank” star recalled. “And then she got him on the plane and got him to rehab. And so, you probably saw the picture, and I just got a picture today, he was skydiving, skydiving! So, he’s making progress. I just hope he stays with it. You know, the first couple of weeks are tough, but you know, going through rehab and dealing with addiction, that’s not easy. And dealing with mental illness, it’s not easy. And so I hope he fights his way through it.”
Cuban even offered to pay for West’s rehab, Newsweek reports.
Mark Cuban hopeful for West’s recovery
West was admitted to a Florida rehab center in late September, CBS Sports reported. Cuban said West is taking his “first steps” toward recovery, though he has a long way to go.
Last week, Cuban uploaded a photo of West horseback riding at the rehab facility.
“Ladies & Gentlemen, I present to you, Delonte West. A long, long, long way to go, but he has taken the first steps and shared these with all of us as a thank you for the love and support,” Cuban captioned the photo.