Ex-Terp Williams of Magic says he attempted suicide

November 27, 1992|By Orlando Sentinel

Orlando Magic forward Brian Williams, who is suffering from clinical depression, said yesterday that he attempted suicide last month by taking an overdose of sleeping pills.

Williams, who was removed from the Magic's active roster indefinitely Monday because of his condition, said his depression led to the suicide attempt.

In a telephone interview from his home in Orlando, Fla., Williams, a former University of Maryland player who finished his college career at Arizona, said he took an overdose of sleeping pills because "the intent was to go to the end and back."

He was uncertain how many pills he took, and he said he didn't require hospitalization.

"The pills weren't strong enough," to cause death, Williams said. But I was pretty drugged up for the next day or so."

Williams, who was picked in the first round of last year's NBA draft, said he recently decided he should begin to talk about the suicide try.

"Trying to appear as if everything is all right is detrimental as well," he said. "I think I need to get everything into the open to get well. The intent was . . . to go to the edge and turn around and come back.

"I think that I have made that turn. I think that [suicide] is behind me now."

Williams fainted four times over the summer, including once while swimming in a pool in California and once while driving his car in Orlando. He wasn't seriously injured in either mishap, however.

Two weeks ago, Williams collapsed at practice and banged hishead. He said that he had suddenly become dizzy and lost his balance.

Williams said he had no idea when his condition would improve enough to allow him to resume playing. In four games this season he has averaged 5.5 minutes, 1.3 points and 2.3 rebounds.

"I'd like to be playing now," he said. "But at this point there is just no way to know when I will be back."

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