It started out last week with a distressing scene: former NBA player Delonte West standing in the rain on the side of a Dallas street, holding up a sign asking for help. Someone snapped a pic, and concerned parties started trying to track the 37-year-old down. This week, a big name found him. TMZ Sports reports that Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban tried for days to get in touch via a phone call with West, who played for Cuban's team from 2011 to 2012. He finally did, and he got West to agree to meet him Monday at a Dallas gas station. A 15-second video shows West inside the gas station's convenience store, waiting, then a short snippet of a masked Cuban picking up West in his blue Tesla. Cuban confirmed to ESPN he retrieved West from the gas station and wants to help him get his life settled.
"The rest is up to Delonte and his family to tell," Cuban said in an email to the Washington Post, which details West's longtime struggles with mental illness, homelessness, and substance abuse. He once told the paper he'd tried to kill himself repeatedly as a teen, and he revealed in 2008 that he had bipolar disorder. After he stopped playing for the NBA in 2015, his life took a turn for the worse: He was first spotted wandering around Houston in 2016, apparently homeless, and in January of this year, he was seen getting beaten up on a highway in a video that circulated on social media. Sources tell TMZ that West's family and friends have been trying to get him into rehab, and that Cuban, who's tried to help West in the past, wants to put up the money to make that happen. (Read more Mark Cuban stories.)