Former NBA star and first-round pick by the New Jersey Nets in 1989, Mookie Blaylock, 46, was reported by a police spokesperson to be on life support on Friday following a head-on crash with a van in suburban Atlanta, Georgia. The driver of the van died.
According to eyewitnesses, the SUV that Blaylock was driving crossed over the center line before slamming into a van headed in the opposite direction. Blaylock’s Cadillac Escalade flipped over and burst into flames, then landed in a ditch, after Friday’s impact with the van.
There were two passengers traveling in the vehicle that Blaylock was driving. Their conditions and identities are unknown at this time, but they and Blaylock were transported to the Atlanta Medical Center. Blaylock was airlifted to the hospital, and he was initially reported to be on life support and was unresponsive, according to a hospital spokesperson. Since then, he has improved and is now listed as being in critical condition.
Mookie Blaylock and his passengers were headed to Jonesboro, stated Clyton County police spokesman Clarence Cox.
Monica Murphy, 43, a passenger in the van, died just before 10 p.m., reported Jonesboro Police Chief Franklin Allen said late Friday.
Blaylock had an outstanding warrant out of Spalding County on DUI and drug charges for failing to appear in court, Allen said later. However, as of this time, investigators do not believe alcohol was a factor in the Friday wreck.
Allen said that Blaylock was headed northbound on Tara Boulevard when he crossed over the median and into a southbound lane around 1 p.m.
Her husbvand, Frankie Murphy, escaped from the injury with only a broken ankle and after receiving treatment at the hospital, he was released.
Blaylock reportedly has a history of seizures. Police are investigating into the possibility that a seizure might have led to the fatal accident that took the life of Monica Murphy.
Mookie Blaylock is best-known for playing with the Atlanta Hawks from 1992-99. He appeared in the 1994 NBA All-Star Game, as well. Blaylock’s best season was in 1996-97, when he averaged 17.4 points and 5.9 assists per game.
“We are saddened to hear of the accident today involving Mookie Blaylock and the Murphy family and the ensuing passing of Monica Murphy,” a statement released to the Journal-Constitution from the Atlanta Hawks said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of all involved.”
During Blaylock’s 13 NBA seasons with New Jersey, Atlanta and Golden State, he averaged 13.5 points and 6.2 assists.
In a tweet, point guard Chris Powell his sympathy for Blaylock: “Prayers out to Mookie Blaylock and his family! Big fan of his as a kid #PG #NBAFamily.”
Mookie Blaylock’s real name is Daron, and he is a native of Texas. He currently resides in the town of Zebulon, which is located in Pike County. He played college basketball at the University of Oklahoma.
Blaylock is also the father of twins Daron and Zack Blaylock, both safeties at the University of Kentucky. The two were former standout high school football players at Walton High School in Cobb County, Georgia.
Written by: Douglas Cobb