Charles Oakley, 56, will be hitting the ballroom for the first time when Dancing With the Stars season 29 premieres Sept. 14 on ABC. Charles made a name for himself in the NBA, but now he’s got his sights set on the mirrorball trophy. He admitted to reporters, including HollywoodLife, that DWTS is a “challenge” but one he is handling well. As the season gets underway, here’s what you need to know about Charles.
1. Charles played in the NBA from 1985 to 2004. Charles was drafted in the 1985 NBA Draft to the Cleveland Cavaliers, but he was traded to the Chicago Bulls. Over the course of his time with the Bulls, he was a great partner to Michael Jordan, whom he is still friends with today. Charles went on to play for the New York Knicks, Toronto Raptors, Washington Wizards, and Houston Rockets throughout his nearly 20-year NBA career. He’s known for being one of the best rebounders in the NBA.
2. He’s now a basketball coach. He has been the coach of the Killer 3’s of the BIG3 since 2017. The Killer 3’s are a 3-on-3 basketball team co-founded by Ice Cube.
3. He’s happily married! Charles married Angela Reed in 2016. She is an entrepreneur in finance and tax.
4. He was arrested after an incident at Madison Square Garden. Charles was involved in an incident at MSG as the New York Knicks faced off against the Los Angeles Clippers on Feb. 8, 2017. He was ejected from the came and arrested. He was charged with three counts of misdemeanor assault and criminal trespassing. Charles was eventually cleared of the charges. He was later banned from Madison Square Garden for one year. Charles filed a lawsuit against New York Knicks owner James Dolan and Madison Square Garden, but it was dismissed by a federal judge, according to ESPN.
5. He is dedicated to helping impoverished and underprivileged communities. Charles is the founder of the Charles Oakley Foundation. The foundation’s main mission is to “organize fundraisers and community-building events that FOCUS on helping impoverished and underprivileged communities.”