If you're anything like me, you wonder once every couple of days or so about what 11-year NBA veteran Jared Jeffries is up to.
The former Washington Wizards, New York Knicks and Houston Rockets big man made 38 appearances for the Portland Trail Blazers last season but didn't generate much interest on the free-agent market, indicating that it might be the end of the line for the one-time Indiana University standout and 2002 lottery pick. Unlike some of my fellow Knicks fans, I developed a little bit of a soft spot for Jeffries' hustle and defensive work during his years of service on terrible New York teams; while I'm not incredibly sad that he's currently out of the NBA, I do have a general feeling of hoping that he is having fun in his early (if unintentional) retirement, enjoying a life where he is not being lustily booed.
I learned Friday that he is doing far, far better than that.
That is a trailer for "Modern Fishing," a series hosted by Jeffries that airs on the Outdoor Channel, which I was pleasantly surprised to learn that I get as part of my Verizon FiOS package. (Channel 591 in HD!) Jeffries fancies himself an avoid outdoorsman — who among us can forget the time he killed an alligator with Brad Miller? — and hosting a fishing show has apparently been a lifelong dream for the 32-year-old. In this (at times NSFW) Portland late-night show interview last January, Jeffries said his two preferred post-playing career options were coaching and hosting a fishing show.
Well, on the latter score, mission accomplished, my man. From the show's website:
Growing up in Indiana, Jared has always been the most comfortable in the woods or on the water. So when he's away from the court, he usually has rod in hand, and angling for the next big catch.
Hey, Outdoor Channel? Phrasing.
Now, you were saying?
Jared intends to share angling tips, tricks, and techniques in a fun and informative way. After watching an episode of Modern Fishing, you should be able to walk away with a bit more knowledge under your belt. With trips planned to exotic fishing destinations, and a number of elusive species on his bucket list, Jared’s passion is to share Modern Fishing with the world. If you like to fish, and have a love of sports too, then follow his adventures as he fishes in the Caribbean and across the globe in search of challenges and glory…Game ON!
I have never wanted anything in my life as much as I want to travel with Jared Jeffries in search of challenges and glory. I don't know how to break this news to my wife, mother, brothers or sister. Under normal circumstances, I'd find that fact somewhat bracing and perhaps even depressing, but these aren't normal circumstances, because all I can think about is traveling with Jared Jeffries in search of challenges and glory.
From Jeffries' bio page:
While in the NBA, Jared would spend his off-season on the water with friends, competing for the biggest catch. Now that Jared has retired from playing, he is taking his fishing to the next level. He has perfected his techniques and wants to share his experience and knowledge with the world.
PERFECTED NEXT-LEVEL TECHNIQUES.
I don't know anything about fishing, and I don't know what makes Jeffries' perfected next-level techniques or their presentation in high-definition particularly "modern. Judging by that trailer, dubstep beats and aggressive side-to-side yanking of a fishing rod held tightly to your ribcage appear to play major roles, and that seems pretty great. Actually, everything about this sounds great.
Congratulations on the new gig, Jared, and best of luck with the series. Here's hoping you follow in your ol' gator-hunting pal Brad's footsteps and become an award-winning television sportsman of an entirely different kind than you once were, encountering new challenges and covering yourself in new glories every step of the way.
Hat-tip to noted fishing enthusiast Robert Silverman.
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