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Despite his draft-night slide, there was only joy in Nerlens’ hometown


Given that it was in my local newspaper, I’m ashamed that it took me so long to come across this Boston Globe article on Nerlens Noel’s deep ties to his hometown of Everett, MA. Tardiness aside though, it’s a read well worth your time.

Some background: Everett is the type of tough, blue collar city featured in every Mark Wahlberg movie ever. Its sports history is as storied as any in the state, and it has produced no shortage of stud athletes, especially in football. Now that Noel’s ticket to the NBA is officially booked, though, he’s become the unquestioned pride of Everett— Particularly among its Haitian community. Here’s a quick look at what the flat top feller’s draft night meant to his hometown:


As the city took note of Nerlens Noel’s new status, Jim Noel tried to absorb just how big an impact his younger brother had made on the city’s Haitian community.

“He’s a big role model for Haitians here. To see a little kid that the whole city helped raise; who has succeeded, just touches everybody’s hearts,” he said.

On draft night, 30 people crowded into Lou Diamonds’ barbershop, where owner Jean Altenor gave Noel his first high-top haircut eight years ago.

“I had goose bumps. I was nervous,” said Altenor, who cut Noel’s hair two weeks ago – a style he refers to as a tight, high-top fade, no Gumby. “He’s the American dream, and also the Haitian dream. He set a good example for all the young kids in the community. They all look up to him, they all love him; a lot of kids are getting high-tops because of him.”


I’m sorry, people-who-question-Nerlens’-character, I can’t hear you over the sound of everyone else telling me what an exemplary role model he is.

Read the article. It’ll warm your heart.


Article written by Andrew McCarthy

11 Comments for Despite his draft-night slide, there was only joy in Nerlens’ hometown

  1. enough
    3:11 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    Ditch this writer, terrible!

  2. Rei
    3:20 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    1. I think you meant to save that comment for a Corey post.

  3. tyson
    3:20 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    In all fairness, I’m not sure people were questioning Nerlens’ character. They were questioning the character of his “handlers” and people he surrounded himself with.

  4. RICK
    3:36 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    Never heard his character questioned by any one.

  5. RahRah
    3:36 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    Nice article. Nerlens has touched a lot of folks’ hearts for sure. #BBNforever!

  6. UK
    4:09 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    People around him weren’t questionable either. Just bitter agents that he blew off to focus on rehab.

    Also GM’s didn’t want to draft someone who might not play their first year because it could cost them a job. So they went with Anthony Bennet (shoulder injury), Alex Len (foot injury), and Cody Zeller (not injured just a terrible pick) over Nerlens.

  7. KG
    4:11 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    Great article. Not only did Mama raise him right She is going to Philly to see that he stays on the path she put him on. Thanks Mama you done a wonderful job parenting.

  8. TC
    4:36 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    Thanks for linking this article. Nerlens’ momma did a wonderful job. Don’t blame her one bit for going with him.

  9. Wildcatsteeler
    4:51 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    Or, as the wingnuts on here would refer to Noel’s childhood: A welfare leach that is destroying the country. And the child of Haitian immigrants. It must have absolutely killed the wingnuts to cheer for him.

  10. PhilUK18
    6:48 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink


    I’ve read just two posts of yours today but they’ve both revolved around inserting politics into a discussion where it doesn’t belong. There are members of BBN on both sides of the aisle, and that isn’t the focus of this site nor does it matter in regards to these articles or being a UK fan. Surely there’s another site where your left wing rantings would be more appropriate and appreciated. Try MSNBC

  11. duckeastwood
    6:58 pm July 8, 2013 Permalink

    man…i’m 33 and caught noel out one night…with other players who i won’t mention…not that they were doing anything shady, i just usually don’t talk and type…what a nice dude…yeah, i’m shady as shit and crazy to boot…but nerlens, he’s a good kid, man…right there on the spot, he’s the type of kid that i woulda done anything for…his handlers might be crazy as poop, but, he’s a good kid…let’s all remember that, good kid.