For those players who don’t make it as stars, a key question they need to ask themselves is where to go once there careers don’t go the way they expected. Some keep trying to hang on in the NBA and many do. Others play overseas. Others still go into another field and are more successful there than they ever were on the court, finding their true calling.
One of those players was Guerschon Yabusele. Here’s the story of Yabusele’s career, how it didn’t go as well as he’d initially hoped, and what he’s doing now for a second act.
Guerschon Yabusele’s NBA career overview
Yabusele hailed from France before being selected in the 2016 NBA Draft. The scouting site NBADraft.net compiled a report on Yabusele’s game and graded him at an overall 91 out of a possible 120 for all aspects of his game. Their specific scouting report read as follows:
“Modern face up power forward… Tremendous wingspan (measured at 7-1 feet) … Very good athlete with strong upper body and quick feet that help him make plays on both ends of the floor … Has improved his body and has shed some baby fat he had… Plays with a lot of passion …
His body and shoulders suggest that he can add muscle in the future … He is really mobile for his size … Very good soft hands … Runs the floor extremely well for a big and is great in transition, with strong finishes at the basket…”
The site compared Yabusele to former NBA forward Gary Trent, who had a solid career in the league. Yabusele was 6’8″ and 260 pounds, so he had the size to bang down low on the boards even if he didn’t have the height of some other power forwards.
The disappointment of Guerschon Yabusele
With all this in mind, the Boston Celtics selected Yabusele with the 16th overall pick in the first round of the 2016 NBA Draft. Yabusele wouldn’t make his debut until the 2017 season, and his career wouldn’t last very long. He played only two years in the league. According to Basketball Reference, he played 74 games and averaged 2.3 points per game. He also only managed to average 1.4 rebounds per game, which isn’t nearly enough to make an impact inside.
The 2018-2019 season was the last one Yabusele spent with Boston, and he now finds himself out of the league.
The fashion career of Guerschon Yabusele
The struggles Yabusele has experienced would set many players back, but he did not let it deter him from pursuing one of his other passions: fashion. USA Today’s Celtics Wire reported Yabusele launched his own fashion line known as “Hors D’oeuvres.” Yabusele found inspiration from his athletic career that helped drive him toward success in another field:
“The culmination of such a project required investment and work just like all of my sporting career, from my beginnings in Dreux to today with the NBA or the French team…The fact that I have encountered people who undertake in various fields during my career convinced me to embark on this project.”
It’s a great story. Yabusele may not be the next Larry Bird or Kevin Garnett (though Celtics fans affectionately dubbed the big man “Dancing Bear” due to his grace and flexibility for his size), but he’s found an industry he enjoys working in that he can also succeed in. That type of ingenuity and hard work should be applauded.