Caron Butler’s book came out today “Tuff Juice: My Journey from the Streets to the NBA”. It is memoir speaking about his life before, during and after the NBA.

Butler was on the Wizards when the infamous Gilbert Arenas guns in the locker room incident took place.

Here is the excerpt, via the Washington Post:

My eyes popped open when I heard Javaris say, “Put the money back. Put the [expletive] money back.”

“I ain’t putting [expletive] back,” Gilbert replied. “Get it the way Tyson got the title. Might or fight or whatever you got to do to get your money back. Otherwise, you ain’t gettin’ it.”

[Caron Butler recalls a life of guns, guts and grit]

When Gilbert put the money in his pocket, Javaris lunged over the table to grab him. Antawn Jamison, seated across the aisle, leaped up, shoved Javaris’s shoulder down on the table, and held it there with the full weight of his body while telling him to calm down.

I got up and yelled “Hey, everybody shut the [expletive] up. How much was in the pot?”

It was $1,100.

“It shouldn’t be that hard to pay what you owe him,” I told Gilbert. “We all make a great living, so just pay the money.”

Everyone could hear Gilbert and Javaris going at it as we rode along.

“I’ll see your [expletive] at practice and you know what I do,” Gilbert said.

“What the [expletive] you mean, you know what I do?” replied Javaris.

“I play with guns.”

“Well I play with guns, too.”

We had the next day off, but on the following day, December 21, practice started at ten o’clock at the Verizon Center so we all wandered in a little earlier.

When I entered the locker room, I thought I had somehow been transported back to my days on the streets of Racine. Gilbert was standing in front of his two locker stalls, the ones previously used by Michael Jordan, with four guns on display. Javaris was standing in front of his own stall, his back to Gilbert.

“Hey, MF, come pick one,” Gilbert told Javaris while pointing to the weapons. “I’m going to shoot your [expletive] with one of these.”

“Oh no, you don’t need to shoot me with one of those,” said Javaris, turning around slowly like a gunslinger in the Old West. “I’ve got one right here.”

He pulled out his own gun, already loaded, cocked it, and pointed it at Gilbert.

Other players who had been casually arriving, laughing and joking with each other, came to a sudden halt, their eyes bugging out. It took them only a few seconds to realize this was for real, a shootaround of a whole different nature. They all looked at each other and then they ran, the last man out locking the door behind him.

I talked calmly to Javaris, reminding him that his entire career, not to mention, perhaps, his life, would be over if he flicked that trigger finger.

I looked back at Gilbert. He was silent as he removed himself from the scene.

Javaris slowly lowered the gun.

I know that Gilbert was thinking, “I went too far. I had a gun pointed at me and it was loaded.”

Somebody outside the locker room called 911. Flip Saunders was the coach back then, but he was too scared to even come into the locker room.

Javaris Crittenton would have murdered Gilbert Arenas that day, because a few years later Crittenton was sentenced to 23 years in jail for murdering a mother of four in a drive-by shooting.

Arenas should thank Butler every day of his life.

By Glenn Erby

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