April 10, 2010
It's not a good time to be a hyper-skilled forward who never really made the most of their considerable talent. First, it was Antoine Walker(notes), his casino debts, and a short stint in Puerto Rico. Now, it's Derrick Coleman, failed business investments, and fur coats.
According to the Wall Street Journal's Bankruptcy Beat, Coleman has filed for bankruptcy and owes creditors $4.7 million, most of which he lost in failed attempts to stimulate Detroit's struggling local economy. His lawyer Mark B. Berke explained the reasons for Coleman's financial struggles.
"Mr. Coleman was focused on investing in various communities throughout the city of Detroit by developing real estate, creating jobs and revitalizing business opportunities," Berke said. "Due to the state of the economy, including the decline in the real estate market, Mr. Coleman's investments could not be sustained."
According to Basketball Reference, Coleman made more than $87 million during his 15 year career with the Nets, 76ers, Hornets, and Pistons. But now he has only about $1 million in assets, including a 1997 Bentley convertible, five fur coats, and $3,000 in jewelry. Not exactly appreciating assets.
Coleman's biggest debt comes from a $1.3 million lawsuit brought against him by Comerica Bank and a $1 million real estate loan from Thornburg Mortgage Home Loans. He also owes $50,000 to NBA Hall of Famer, and current Detroit mayor, Dave Bing.
Despite the filing, Coleman will be trying to keep both his Beverly Hills home, and the home that he bought for his mother, also located in Beverly Hills. Berke says that Coleman is "just hoping to get rid of that debt and make a fresh start."
They say that two is a coincidence, and three is a trend — someone needs to check on Billy Owens to make sure he's doing OK.