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Motivational speaker with a tech start-up, Carrick Felix not your average NBA player


Motivational speaker with a tech start-up, Carrick Felix not your average NBA player

With less than three minutes remaining in the Wizards' exhibition game against China's Guangzhou Long-Lions on Monday night, guard Carrick Felix hustled to get position in the lane on defense to take a charge.

As soon as he was granted the call, the Wizards' bench all rose in unison to celebrate.

The Wizards were up nearly 30 points in a game most would deem meaningless. But for Felix, just being on the court was an achievement in its own.

Felix, 27, hasn't played in the NBA since the 2013-14 season, when he was a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers in between the LeBron James eras.

A second round pick out of Arizona State in 2013, he spent the 2014 offseason with the Utah Jazz but soon after had his career derailed by a horrific knee injury.


While playing with the Santa Cruz Warriors of the D-League, Felix fractured his knee cap. As he describes it, he "broke [his] knee in half."

That was in November of 2014 and from there he sat out two years, unable to play basketball but with plenty of time to think about his future.

"It was a struggle," Felix said on the Wizards Tipoff podcast. "It was a battle between fighting against myself and my mind and my demons and just trying to stay positive. During that time I was hurt, I learned a lot about myself."

Felix never wavered on his dream to return to the NBA, but he had no intention of putting all his eggs in one basket. With a masters degree in Communications from Arizona State University (he graduated early while playing), Felix explored his options. 

With the discipline of an Air Force family upbringing (including several years in the D.C. area), Felix did what he could to stay busy and maintain balance during an arduous rehab process.

"I started doing a lot of keynote speaking, a lot of public speaking," he said. "That's kind of what I want to get into is motivational speaking, when it's all said and done. I have a small start-up, a tech start-up, with a buddy of mine. I was able to take advantage of different things."


An NBA player with a tech start-up? Yes, the company is called Zing It.

"Basically what we are is like an online concierge service. We pretty much allow people to go onto our website and our app platform and pre-book their jetskis, boats, bikes; anything that has to do with outdoor recreational equipment. If you go on vacation, you can kinda chill and instead of going on Google and all that stuff, you can go on your phone and easily book what you want to do," Felix explained.

Felix has big plans for when, as he calls it, "the ball stops bouncing." He studies popular motivational speakers like Tony Robbins and Eric Thomas, hoping one day to find success in helping others. 

If Felix someday needs to demonstrate the power of perseverance in overcoming the odds, perhaps he can reference his own life as a testimonial.

After three full years away from the NBA, two of them rehabbing a devastating knee injury, his determination could be used to inspire.

Felix is now fully healthy and is one of the best dunkers on the Wizards. He won their team dunk contest on Friday night at training camp in Richmond and threw down a few crowd-pleasing slams on Monday against the Long-Lions.

Not bad for a guy whose career was once in real jeopardy.

"For me personally, it's been a blessing. Every day when I wake up I just look in the mirror and smile because having the opportunity like this, a lot of people don't get," he said.

Hear Felix's full interview on the Wizards Tipoff podcast right here:


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Wizards Tipoff podcast: Phil Chenier tells stories ahead of his jersey retirement

Associated Press

Wizards Tipoff podcast: Phil Chenier tells stories ahead of his jersey retirement

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, host Chase Hughes was joined by Bullets/Wizards legend Phil Chenier ahead of his jersey retirement set for this upcoming weekend on March 23.

Chenier looked back on his playing and broadcasting career and told great stories. He also shared some memories of the 1978 championship as the franchise gets ready to honor its 40th anniversary.

You can listen to the episode right here:

You can download the podcast on Apple Podcasts right here and on Google Play. If you like the show please tell your friends!

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Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue stepping away from team to deal with health issues

USA Today Sports Images

Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue stepping away from team to deal with health issues

An undiagnosed illness has convinced Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue to step away from the team indefinitely, the team announced on Monday. Assistant coach Larry Drew will take over in the interim.

Lue, 40, is hoping to address his health issues in time to return before the year is out. According to a statement on the team's website, he has been under the weather for quite some time.


Here is what Lue said on the matter in a press release:

I have had chest pains and other troubling symptoms, compounded by a loss of sleep, throughout the year. Despite a battery of tests, there have been no conclusions as to what the exact issue is.

While I have tried to work through it, the last thing I want is for it to affect the team. I am going to use this time to focus on a prescribed routine and medication, which has previously been difficult to start in the midst of a season. My goal is to come out of it a stronger and healthier version of myself so I can continue to lead this team to the Championship we are all working towards.

That is scary stuff and certainly much bigger than basketball. But the surprising news happens to come at a crucial time in the Cavs' season. They are currently third in the Eastern Conference with only 13 games remaining before the playoffs.


The Cavs are just a half-game ahead of both the Wizards and Pacers in the standings. They will also have to reincorporate All-Star Kevin Love, likely sometime this week. 

That is a lot for Drew to deal with while Lue recovers and it adds another wrinkle to a Cavs' season that has been characterized by change.


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