Skal Labissiere is perhaps the most outstanding player of Haitian descent currently shining in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Tall, fast, and versatile, Labissiere’s career has improved by only one year since he went pro in 2016, and the question “Who is Skal Labissiere?” has now entered the minds of many basketball lovers who cannot help but become curious about the life of the 7-strong footballer. Fortunately, there is a lot of information about Haitian power forward. Here is a detailed answer to the question of who Skal Labissiere is.
Who Is Skal Labissiere?
Skal Labissiere was born on March 18, 1996, in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince. While growing up in Haiti, he started playing basketball at the Collège Canada-Haïtien school.
With the school team, Skal was able to participate in competitions organized by the Comité Interscolaire de Basketball Amateur (CIBA) and the Association de Basketball Interscolaire (ASI).
6 Facts About The Power Forward
1. Skal Labissiere and his Family were Victims of the 2010 Haiti Earthquake
The young lad lived with his family in the capital Port-au-Prince when, at the age of 14, their lives were threatened by the deadly earthquake that shook the nation in 2010.
Labissiere was in their home with his mother and younger brother when the house suddenly began to shake. It started immediately, the family knew what it was and came together and prepared for the worst. In an instant, their house collapsed above them, and Skal and his family remained trapped in the rubble for three long hours.
At some point, they thought they would die, but luckily they were saved. The power forward shared the experience during his interview with the Player Tribune in June 2016 after making it into the NBA. After the earthquake, Skal had numb legs, and in the following weeks, he could no longer walk. Fortunately, he is completely healed.
2. He Relocated to the United States after the 2010 Earthquake to Continue his Basketball Career
After the earthquake, Skal’s basketball future seemed bleak, but thanks to Gerald Hamilton, whose Reach Your Dream Foundation helped to open up international prospects for the United States. Skal became a benefactor of the Foundation and a few months after the quake, he made it to Memphis, Tennessee to live with Hamilton.
In Memphis, Skal began attending the Evangelical Christian School, and at a fast pace until his eighth grade, he played on the university basketball team. At the beginning of his schooling, Skal needed a French interpreter, but after about four months of English lessons, he became fluent in English.
In his graduation year 2014, Skal moved to the Lausanne Collegiate School, but due to TSSAA rules, he could not play in the basketball team in his first year. However, his career did not suffer from the fact that he continued to refine his talent in the team of Gerald Hamilton’s Reach Your Dream Prep Academy.
3. His Stellar Performance had him Rated a 5-Star Recruit and the Best Player in his Class
Although Skal only started playing basketball on the school team in the 8th grade, he quickly improved and became the best in his class. University of Kentucky coach John Calipari greatly admired his skills and compared him to Anthony Davis, the first overall candidate for the 2012 NBA Draft. Calipari offered Skal a scholarship, ahead of any other prospects for 2015.
4. The Power Forward Forwent his Last 3 Years of College Eligibility to Enter the 2016 NBA Draft
From the point of view of many, Skal, with an average of only 6.6 points in 36 games, did not live up to the high expectations that many in college had of him. Nevertheless, he was still a first-round candidate in the 2016 draft after failing to meet the last three years of his college eligibility.
The Phoenix Suns selected him with the 28th overall selection, making Skal Labissiere the best Haitian draft player since Samuel Dalembert, who was ranked 26th in the 2001 NBA draft. A few weeks after his draft selection, Labissiere was transferred to the Sacramento Kings.
5. As a Rookie, Skal Labissiere had Numerous Assignments with the NBA Development League’s Reno Bighorns
Skal had a pretty good rookie season with the Kings. He became the 41st NBA player under the age of 20 to score at least 32 points. Tyreke Evans is the only other player to have achieved this feat with the Kings. Skal was sent to the Reno Bighorns of the Development League several times during his rookie season, but each time he became a better player.
His new entrant contract, signed on July 15, 2016, was a 3-year contract worth $3,945,627 with all money guaranteed. According to Spotrac, the contract gives him an annual salary of $1,315,209.