High school prodigy and former OKC Thunder player Sebastian Telfair sentenced to 3.5 years

Sebastian Telfair, OKC Thunder (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
Sebastian Telfair, OKC Thunder (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images) /

A high school standout Sebastian Telfair entered the NBA with similar fanfare as LeBron James but never fully recognized his goals. The former OKC Thunder player was sentenced to 3.5 years on gun possession.

Former OKC Thunder point guard Sebastian Telfair will spend the next three and a half years in jail following a conviction for gun possession. The sentencing followed the charges Telfair received in the summer of 2017. This was also the second time the former NBA player was charged on a weapons possession.

As per Timothy Rapp of Bleacher Report, the previous weapons charge occurred in 2007 and resulted in three years of probation. Telfair wasn’t as fortunate this time and despite requesting a jury trial and believing he had a case based on his lawyer (Richard Southard) stating an officer perjured himself, a jury of his peers found Telfair guilty.

Telfair logged 10 seasons in the NBA playing for eight different franchises. Those teams included the Portland Trail Blazers (3 seasons), Minnesota Timberwolves (2 seasons), Phoenix Suns (2 seasons) and a single season or less with each of the Boston Celtics, LA Clippers, Cleveland Cavaliers, Toronto Raptors, and OKC Thunder.

The point guard was drafted by the Portland Trail Blazers with the 13th pick in the 2004 class. He was among the group of players who came directly to the pros from high school. Hailing from Brooklyn New York, Telfair is the cousin of  Stephon Marbury.

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Telfair’s last stop in the NBA was with the OKC Thunder where he appeared in 16 games during the 2014-15 season. In those games, he averaged 8.4 points, 1.9 rebounds, and 2.8 assists. The point guard played in games from October 29, through to November 26.

Russell Westbrook missed most of those games due to injury. Once Westbrook recovered and returned the team no longer had need of Telfair’s services and he was subsequently released. Those were the last meaningful games he played in the NBA.

Much like many of the high school prospects who skipped College to directly ascend into the pros, there were great expectations the Abraham Lincoln product would develop into a star player. The season prior to his draft was the year LeBron James was selected first overall.

Although Telfair wasn’t drafted as the top prospect like James, he arrived into the Association with similar expectations. The headline from the SLAM magazine cover (pictured in the tweet above) read “the Takeover” with a subtitled “Sebastian Telfair and LeBron James are about to rule the world. Imagine that.”

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Those lofty goals never came to pass and now the once promising basketball player will spend his next three and a half years in jail.