Former ABA players face struggles


During Black History Month, with the series 28 Black Stories in 28 days, USA TODAY Sports examines the issues, challenges and opportunities Black athletes and sports officials face after the nation’s reckoning on race in 2020.

Maurice McHartley is in the rehab waiting room, talking quietly, hushed, about how it all happened. He was driving back to his apartment, subsidized housing in Atlanta, when his chest started tightening, the sweat started soaking his clothes. 

He survived because of “his lady,” he said. When he got home, McHartley told her he just needed to rest on the couch. She insisted he get to the hospital where doctors told him he’d had a heart attack. Stents were put in. But his heart needed more.

So McHartley was in the waiting room on Feb. 4, five months later, for cardiac rehab that costs him $50 a week out of pocket. It doesn’t sound like much to most, he knows, especially to a former pro basketball player. 





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