Some months ago, one of the biggest stars in the world of NBA, Giannis Antetokounmpo revealed that he had been struggling with mental health problems that nearly cost him his basketball career. Particularly, the Milwaukee Bucks player revealed that he was in such a bad psychological state and he was so much battling with mental health issues that he was almost ready to walk away from the NBA and leave his professional career. 

Imagine huge players like Antetokounmpo storming out of their sport and not having a chance to work their problems out, because of the enormous pressure they feel… It would be a clear disaster for everyone. 

For the sport itself. For the teams. For the fans who want to see a fascinating basketball game featuring top notch players. And also for punters who often back with their bets, placed at, these top notch players. 

Giannis Antetokounmpo is not the only NBA player who has been openly talking about such problems. In fact, the mental health issues that all athletes and especially NBA athletes, face are well known by now. 

And we are saying that especially about NBA players, because it is one of the most reputed, popular and famous leagues in the world with millions and millions of fans across the world. This puts the NBA on the spot and the NBA players at the center of attention. 

NBA players are constantly under scrutiny, for both their professional and personal lives. Their basketball skills and performance are continuously monitored and evaluated by NBA teams, executives but by fans as well. Everything they do within the basketball court is assessed and everything is up for critical analysis and performance rating. The teams are putting the players on the spotlight and their performance becomes the focus of attention. 


But it does not stop there. Besides the huge pressure by the sport itself, NBA players also feel pressure in their personal lives. They are big stars and the public wants to follow them and know everything about their lives. This is an enormous burden for the professional basketballers, who don’t get to be themselves even in their personal time. 

It is not a big surprise that many of the NBA stars have admitted that their personal well-being and the balance between their professional and family lives has been seriously tackled. This, on its own, is indeed a big deal for an athlete and a factor that can seriously impact his mental health and his subsequent future in the sport.

Added to these, it is the pressure for making a big career in the NBA. Everybody expects NBA players to outperform a constantly higher and higher benchmark. Everybody wants to see players become bigger and bigger and master the basketball court. And everybody wants to cheer out to players who are way surpassing themselves and do magic on the court. 

But all these do nothing more than put an extra burden to the players, who are already struggling with the growing stress, anxiety and lack of professional-personal life balance. Their psychology deteriorates and they end up dealing with mental health issues.

Luckily, the National Basketball Association has been very considerate and very sensitive towards undertaking measures to prevent the mental health and well-being of professional basketball players. 

The last three years – since 2020 – the NBA has developed its program and regulation which promotes mental health support and psychological consultation to all players. All thirty teams are required to have a clear plan for mental health, fully integrated psychiatrists and mental health professionals within the team officials and a strategy for coping with players’ stress, well-being and any potential mental health problems. 


The mental health of all NBA professional players is not to be overlooked. Everybody deserves to feel good, secure and positive within and outside the court and for those players who are struggling with mental health issues, the NBA has provisioned for full support, consultation and help.