Report: Streetball legend Jackson dies
Troy "Escalade" Jackson, the larger-than-life streetball legend and younger brother of former NBA player Mark Jackson, died in his sleep early Sunday morning, according to the New York Post.
The 6-foot-10, 400-pound Jackson, 35, was in Los Angeles for NBA All-Star Weekend. The cause of death is unknown pending an autopsy.
Jackson, a Jamaica, Queens native, played college basketball at Louisville, but became one of the most famous streetball players of all time with the And 1 Mixtape Tour, a traveling basketball exhibition he joined in 2002.
He also traveled for two years with the Harlem Globetrotters and most recently he competed with the Ball Up streetball team.
"He traveled all around the world and touched so many lives," Mark Jackson told The Post from LA. "He will be greatly missed. Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers. God is still good."
Many former and current NBA players like Shaquille O'Neal and Rick Fox gave condolences yesterday on their Twitter accounts.
"My heart goes out to Mark Jackson and his family who lost his brother last night, Escalade," O'Neal tweeted. "We lost a great person love u escalade. I'm sad."
Off the court, Troy Jackson, who appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated's June 13, 2005 issue, was an advocate for STD prevention after losing his other brother to AIDS in the 1980s.
Close friend, Ron Naclerio, the coach at Cardozo High School in Queens, called the big man "all class."
"He was the gentlest giant there ever was," Naclerio said.
Mark Jackson, a Brooklyn native who now works for ESPN as a commentator on NBA games, played 17 seasons, mostly with the Knicks, Clippers and Pacers.