The sulphurous All-Star assassinated in an African dictatorship
In the 70’s, being an NBA player did not necessarily mean leading a dream life… Quickly put aside for his sulphurous character, John Brisker had to find a new career far from the prosecution. This tragic journey took him to Africa, where he made the meet unhappy of a bloodthirsty tyrant.
John Brisker’s name surely doesn’t ring a bell, and yet this player was far from fitting in when he was on the pitch. The proof, during his passage in ABA with the Pittsburgh Condors, this winger was All-Star two consecutive seasons thanks to his 29 points and 9 rebounds of average! And if he will never have found this level in the NBA with Seattle, he was still very valuable in the rotation. Well, up to a point …
Because the big problem is that Brisker had a fiery temperament and it didn’t take much for him to pull the pin… He fought so often during his three seasons in Pittsburgh that he was nicknamed « the champion weight. ABA heavyweight ”by his teammates! And if his leaders have long closed their eyes as he brought on the field, he ended up being placed on the bench in Seattle, then released after only 3 seasons spent in the northwest of the country.
And far from the NBA microcosm, with a 3-year-old daughter to educate, John Brisker, then 30, had to find a new source of income to support his family. After a short failed experience in catering, the former star winger decided to pack his bags and fly to Africa in 1978 to set up an import / export business … Of all the countries, he has no doubt chose the least welcoming.
Indeed, Brisker landed in Uganda, a country ruled at the time by one of the worst dictators in history: Idi Amin Dada (between 100,000 and 500,000 civilians were killed during his reign). And only a few months after his arrival, he did not give the slightest sign of life to his wife, his friends, or his former teammates … Even today, no one knows the truth about the circumstances of his disappearance, but the site NBA Insider evokes the most widespread rumor on this subject.
Brisker is rumored to have become friends with dictator Idi Amin Dada, who was a huge basketball fan. He would therefore have invited the former NBA player to the Royal Palace for a demonstration. He was then reportedly hired to lead the national team, but John Brisker reportedly had a heated argument over the team with the dictator. He would then have been the victim of this bloodthirsty tyrant.
The other hypothesis is that Brisker would have become a henchman of Idi Amin, and that he would have been killed by the Ugandan people at the time of the revolution… Two plausible theses that the long investigation of the FBI did not could neither confirm nor deny. If he was officially recognized dead in 1985, 7 years after his disappearance, some still think that the former All-Star is hiding and leading a peaceful life in Africa… The mystery is still complete!
John Brisker has one of the craziest stories in NBA history! Even today, despite years and surveys, nobody knows what happened to him …