Former UCLA and NBA basketball star Tyler Honeycutt fatally shot himself early Saturday morning at age 27. His former high school basketball coach, Bort Escoto, described him as a fantastic kid who was great to be around. However, Escoto shared that he was having some problems.
hurt by the news, glad no one else was injured, but ultimately sad to say, rest in peace to my basketball brother tyler honeycutt… pic.twitter.com/5jmXT472gB
— Solomon Hill (@solohill) July 7, 2018
Former NBA & UCLA Player Tyler Honeycutt Was Found Dead After Exchanging Gunfire With Police:
Tyler Honeycutt, a former UCLA star and Sacramento Kings draft pick, was found dead in the Sherman Oaks area of Los Angeles on Saturday morning. According to the Los Angeles Times, the Los Angeles Police Department responded to a call about a “man with a gun” inside of a Sherman Oaks residence home. Apparently, his mother is the one who phoned the police as she was concerned for him as he was allegedly acting erratically. Bort Escoto, who coached Honeycutt for four years at Sylmar High School, told the Los Angles Times that he advised Tyler’s mother to phone the police. Escoto had talked with Honeycutt earlier and he appeared to be fine.
This is sad news about Tyler Honeycutt. Mental health issues are real and depression is serious. He played at Sylmar just like me. https://t.co/Oi75FoDXLQ
— George Wrighster III (@georgewrighster) July 7, 2018
Tyler Honeycutt Was Having Some Problems:
Bort Escoto had been in contact with Honeycutt and his mother. He shared that Honeycutt was a great kid who was fun to be around but he had problems. Escoto said that he last spoke to Honeycutt about 4 p.m. Friday and that it “seemed like he was burdened with something.” Unfortunately, Escoto never learned what was bothering Honeycutt but he believed that playing basketball in Russia was too much for him.
It’s hard for an L.A. kid to go to Russia, not know the language or surroundings, Escoto said. He was basically having a hard time with the adjustment. I just kept telling him he needed to get out and meet people.
Honeycutt, a 6-foot-8 forward from Sylmar, just north of Los Angeles, played two seasons at UCLA from 2009-2011 and earned first-team All-Pac 12 honors in his sophomore season. He then declared for the NBA draft and was selected by Sacramento in the second round (35th overall pick) in 2011.
He played minimally for the Kings and was eventually traded to Houston in 2013. He never played for the Rockets, and in August, 2013, he moved his playing career overseas, starting with Ironi Nes Ziona in Israel. For the past few years, he had bounced back and forth between Khimki and Anadolu Efes in Turkey.
He said Honeycutt was supposed to sign a new contract on Saturday with either Russia or Israel.
27 year old Tyler Honeycutt played two seasons with the Sacramento Kings. https://t.co/3gatiT158z
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) July 7, 2018
It Is Believed That Honeycutt Ended His Own Life:
Escoto had spoken with Honeycutt while he was barricaded inside of his home. He reached out to him and asked if he was ok. Honeycutt responded by simply saying “K” as he never explicitly said what was bothering him. Escoto was aware that Honeycutt reportedly shot at officers but around 10:00 p.m. Friday night, he was informed that Honeycutt was still alive. According to Deadspin, officers returned fire when Honeycutt fired at them. However, officers believed that he was still alive. Escoto began to worry about Honeycutt as he knew that jail wouldn’t be a good place for him.
I felt he’s not built to go to jail, Escoto said. But I don’t see him ending his life either.
Around 4:45 a.m., Escoto learned the somber truth from Honeycutt’s mom. Tyler was dead as it is believed that he killed himself. SWAT officers finally gained access to the residence at around 3:30 Saturday morning and they found Honeycutt unresponsive.
Several NBA Players Tweeted Out Their Condolences:
Many NBA players, both current and past, expressed their thoughts on Twitter.
“I am sorry i cannot talk right now, i am really sad” GBartzokas. Tyler Honeycutt, massa jove per morir. pic.twitter.com/ei1ah8nhBo
— Víctor Lavagnini (@victorlavagnini) July 7, 2018
Still can’t believe this… Rest In Peace to my brother Tyler Honeycutt
— That Boy Jrue (@Jrue_Holiday11) July 7, 2018
R.I.P. Tyler Honeycutt 🙏🏾💔
— Terrence Ross (@TFlight31) July 7, 2018
RIP Tyler Honeycutt🙏🏾
Prayers up for his family and friends.
Rest easy bro!
— DeMarcus Cousins (@boogiecousins) July 7, 2018
Our prayers and condolences go out to the family of Tyler Honeycutt.