His first 10-day contract became a second 10-day contract, then the long-term deal.“I really liked his game,” Gentry says. He could guard different positions, and he was extremely hungry.When someone has that level of talent, but he doesn’t see failing in the NBA as an option, you have something unique.”Dejean-Jones averaged 5.6 points and 3.4 rebounds before his season ended with a fractured right wrist.His girlfriend lived with their one-year-old daughter in unit No.1445, and the 203-pound Dejean-Jones was overcome with rage that he’d been locked out.He never kept the gun loaded, so after gripping it with his hand, he picked up the magazine—also in the nightstand—and loaded it. At least one person, he was certain, had entered the apartment. That’s when it became clear Bryce Dejean-Jones was, in fact, not on the Bryce Dejean-Jones was living the dream. But one year ago, having just signed a three-year deal with the Pelicans, it was true. Maintained an A average at the nearby Calvary Christian School.“We swam, we shot baskets, we played video games,” says Richard Solomon, a childhood friend who now plays pro ball in France.
Bryce was Bryce: Along with the passion and heart came the propensity for finding himself in bad situations. But Fred Hoiberg, the head coach, still suspended him from the upcoming game against archrival Iowa.“That was it for Bryce,” says Matt Abdelmassih, an Iowa State assistant coach. From that point on, things spiraled out of control.”Dejean-Jones arrived late to the next game, and Hoiberg permanently removed him from the starting lineup. And, deep down, he’s one of the best guys I ever coached.”People who knew Dejean-Jones well speak of his college time as lost opportunity. The outbursts, the anger, the frustration—it was never anything personal.I think he realized he needed to change his ways to stay in the league.He was smart enough to do that.”Bryce Dejean-Jones should never have gone to Dallas.According to witness reports, he proceeded to kick and punch the metal front door, repeatedly and with such force that he broke through a pair of deadbolts.Once inside, he tried opening the bedroom door, only to find that it too was locked.