Bucks Assistant Coach Vin Baker Helps Others Battle Addiction After Overcoming Alcoholism.

Vin Baker of the Seattle Supersonics during the 1998 NBA All-Star game on February 8, 1998 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

WAUKESHA, Wis. (CBS 58) — Vin Baker already has an impressive resume. He’s a four-time NBA All-Star and the assistant coach for the Milwaukee Bucks. But he’s doing important work off the court, as well.

Baker was a four-time NBA All-Star who earned nearly $100 million throughout his career. But throughout his journey, he was battling the demon of addiction.

“The alcohol, the drug, will take over your body,” said Baker.

At his lowest, Baker told CBS 58 he was drinking every single day.

“One day, I just realized that I wanted to. I woke up and said I want to save my life, and so that’s what I did, and I started one day at a time,” Baker said.

The days turned to months, and before he knew it, Baker is now 12 years sober and back in the NBA, working as an assistant for the Milwaukee Bucks and helping others. Baker hosted a fundraiser on the golf course on Monday, Aug. 29, for his foundation, “Bouncing Back.” The foundation’s goal is to treat, educate, and motivate those dealing with addiction.

“It’s providing hope,” Baker said. “There’s a point in my life and my addiction where I had lost it, so that’s the one thing I want to provide. It is my life’s mission to supply hope now and to provide hope for those people who were in the same predicament and same place that I was in 12 years ago.”

Hope is not the easiest thing to quantify, but Baker says they are putting that word into “brick and mortar” by helping open up two intensive outpatient programs in Wisconsin over the next four months. One is in Milwaukee, and one is in Green Bay.

“The most important thing to understand about addiction is you can get sober. If it happened for me, it can happen for anyone,” Baker said.

When CBS 58 asked Baker what his advice would be to anyone battling some of the same struggles he was 12 years ago, he smiled and said, “A sober life is the best life.”

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