As NBA fans mourn the loss of Rasual Butler, learn more about him and his career. The former NBA star tragically died, along with his wife in a horrific car crash in CA on January 30.
Rasual Butler, 38, and his wife, Leah LaBelle, 31, were tragically killed in a car crash on Wednesday morning, January 30, in Studio City, CA. The former NBA star reportedly lost control of his Range Rover around 2 AM, and slammed into a wall, causing his vehicle to flip. Officials reportedly believe Butler’s car was speeding before the crash. Our thoughts are with Butler’s friends and family during this difficult time Here are five key facts about the late basketball player.
1. Butler is a Philadelphia native, who made a name for himself at La Salle University. — Born on May 23, 1979, in Philadelphia, PA, Butler became the sixth Explorer to score over 2,000 points during his college career [1998-2002] at La Salle. He was eventually inducted into the La Salle University Hall of Athletes, where he ranked fourth among the Explorer’s all-time scorers, recording 2,125 points.
2. He played for eight NBA teams during his career. — Drafted in 2002 in the second round at No. 53 overall by the Miami Heat, Butler made his way around the league, having played for eight teams in 13 seasons. He played for the Heat [2002-2005], Hornets [2005-20019], Clippers [2009-2011], Bulls , Raptors [2011-2012], Pacers [2013-2014], Wizards [2014-2015], and Spurs [2015-2016]. Butler was a forward who averaged 7.5 points and 2.4 rebounds per game. He also played in the NBA D-League, now known as the G-League, for the Tulsa 66ers. He most recently played in Ice Cube‘s BIG3 league.
3. His NBA career came to a halt in 2016. — Butler signed with the Minnesota Timberwolves, but was waived about a month later after playing only five preseason games.
4. Butler’s career highlights and awards. — In 2013, he was awarded Impact Player of the Year in the NBA D-League. Butler was a 2x First-team All-Atlantic 10 player.
5. Butler was married to R&B singer Leah LaBelle, and had ties to some famous friends. — Butler was married to Leah LaBelle, who appeared on American Idol and was signed to Epic Records. LaBelle placed 12th on the 3rd season in 2004. He also starred in rapper Trina‘s music video for “Here We Go” in 2009. Butler was known to have a close friendship with former NBA player, Lamar Odom, 38, who was married to Khloe Kardashian, 33. Butler has appeared in episodes of Khloe and Lamar [now off the air], while he was dating Khloe’s best friend, Malika Haqq, 34.
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