Curtis Malone guided plenty of his players to Kansas State, and now his relationship with former top recruit Michael Beasley and former Frank Martin assistant Dalonte Hill is prominently featured in a Sports Illustrated article.
The Aug. 25 issue of Sports Illustrated will feature an article about the former D.C. Assault leader, who was sentenced to 100 months in prison in May after pleading guilty to distributing large amounts of cocaine and heroin.
The article details the relationship between Beasley, Malone and Hill, who was a former coach and player for the AAU team.
Malone ran the AAU program that funneled Beasley, Dominique Sutton, Jamar Samuels, Rodney McGruder and Wally Judge to Manhattan.
Samuels was suspended for the Wildcats’ NCAA tournament third-round game against Syracuse after he accepted a wire transfer in the amount of $200 from Malone.
Malone first rose to fame with his 1996 D.C. Assault team that featured future NBA players Keith Bogans and DerMarr Johnson. After earning his AAU program a corporate sponsorship from Adidas, Malone steered Johnson to Cincinnati to play for Bob Huggins in 1999.
Beasley’s relationship with Malone would deepen in 2003, when his mother Fatima Smith reportedly asked Malone to take her son in.
“You have to come get him,” Hill recalls her saying in the article, “to save his life.”
From there, Malone invested in the young Beasley, who was raised alongside Malone’s stepson, Nolan Smith, a 2011 ACC Player of the Year at Duke.
Malone raised Beasley as a son and took him through six high schools in five states before leading him to commit to play for Charlotte, where Hill was an assistant.
When Huggins hired Hill to join his K-State staff, Beasley followed. When Huggins left and Martin was named head coach, Beasley decided to stay once Hill was promoted to associate head coach and made the highest-paid assistant in the country.
Hill left K-State to work for former Wichita State coach Mark Turgeon at Maryland in 2011. He resigned last November after news of his third DUI arrest became public.
After one season at K-State, Beasley opted to enter the NBA Draft and hired Joel Bell as his agent, under Malone’s direction. Beasley went on to fire Bell before his first NBA game and accused him in a lawsuit of giving Malone benefits for the D.C. Assault program in exchange for manipulation of potential pro prospects into signing him as their agent. The suit was later dropped.
“I won’t tell you I didn’t know about it,” Martin told Sports Illustrated of the arrangement between Bell and Malone. “Of course I knew about it. Agents run the NBA, agents run grassroots basketball.”
Since he was drafted as the second pick of the NBA Draft in 2008, Beasley’s career has been marred by drug charges, rehab stints and a reportedly shaky work ethic.
The article suggests Beasley has since severed all relationship with both Hill and Malone.
In an interview with SI, Malone said he resents taking in Beasley just to watch his mother re-emerge as a primary influence right before he was to make millions as an NBA player. Malone contends that if Beasley had kept him as an advisor, he’d be on target to make $300 million in his career. Beasley’s decision to sever ties with Malone ended a plan the former AAU leader had to become an agent and eventually leave the Assault.
Malone says he is planning a book to detail all the events in his life as an AAU coach and drug dealer.