Vernon Maxwell was a loose cannon back in his heyday in the NBA, and his behavior could go against opponents or teammates.
The former NBA shooting guard said that he planned to chase down Basketball Hall of Fame center and ex-Houston Rockets teammate Hakeem Olajuwon and “stab the s–t out of him” if police didn’t break up a fight between the two during halftime of a road game against the Seattle SuperSonics.
He made those remarks on the No Chill With Gilbert Arenas podcast. The confrontation between the two occurred after a tough first half in which the Rockets performed poorly and Maxwell didn’t do much offensively. Maxwell expressed displeasure to his teammates that he wasn’t getting the ball enough and Olajuwon caught wind of what he was saying.
Olajuwon apparently yelled at Maxwell from behind and then “smacked the s— outta me,” Maxwell recalled. “That motherfu–er hit me so hard, man, [he] knocked me out the chair.
Maxwell retaliated by throwing a chair at Olajuwon and broke a lot of glass that shattered all over the locker room. He then picked up a big piece of the glass and said he intended to stab Olajuwon before police intervened.
“I jumped up, grabbed my chair, and throwed it at [that] motherf–ker, bust the glass in the locker room. Everybody running out. Police come in with the guns drawn, like ‘what the hell goin’ on in here?'”
“Damn, they got the guns on me at a professional halftime. At a professional game,” he said.
That quickly ended the fight.
Maxwell said he and Olajuwon eventually made up and had a more cordial relationship as time went on. Maxwell said that Olajuwon’s conversion to Islam led to him becoming a better teammate.
“After that, [Hakeem] became Muslim. He was so quiet. So humble. So, [he] wanted me to become Muslim. I couldn’t do it. But, he was a great teammate after that.”
Olajuwon and Maxwell played together on the Rockets from 1990-95. They won back-to-back NBA titles for the Rockets in 1994 and 1995.