The Plight of the Retired Athlete

By Jeffrey Beall [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

It is known in the professional sports community that athletes die twice in their lives, retirement being the first and the second being of the literal type. Most folks are frightened to die, so it makes sense why so many washed-up sports stars do everything in their power to avoid throwing in the proverbial towel (we are looking at you, Peyton). These middle-aged multi-millionaires must recognize that life is not done once their professional careers are through. Shifting their focus to be great at something new is all these competitors need to thrive and feel whole again. What better place to direct a person of competitive nature than the ruthless world of Business?

For you already-retired, should-be-retired (looking a you again, Peyton), and young stars that will inevitably be retiring in the near future, I want to inspire you and get your wheels turning. To do so, I have chosen a single, retired athlete by the name of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and generated five legitimate, novel business ideas for him, completely free of charge. Kareem, if you drunkenly stumble upon this blog post and would like to pursue one of these ventures, we can talk.

In creating the below business ideas, it was pertinent to use Kareem’s name, as all sports stars have tremendous built-in brand recognition due to media saturation. So without further ado, here are 5 businesses made specifically for the Czar of Sky Hooks, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar…

1. JabBarbies — The iconic Barbie is loved by America’s daughters and their perverted, younger brothers. This 11.5” tall figurine of virtually-unattainable measurements (36–18–33) has been fueling girls to achieve an unrealistic body shape since 1959. JabBarbies will be the equivalent for the little boys of America. This 7’2”, life-size Kareem doll will have young men inventing new ways to stretch their limbs to grow into the next sky-hooking NBA marvel. These dolls will come in various skin tones so as not to discriminate against any race.

2. Kareem Ab-duel Workout — Kareem had an undeniable core; how else would he have been able to hang so long in a karate duel against Bruce Lee in the 1978 blockbuster “The Game of Death?” The entire male population wanted to resemble the Spartans once “300” came out so every guy scoured the internet for their elusive workout. We plan to utilize this idea by re-releasing Kareem’s “The Game of Death” in attempt to make it again relevant. Our plan is to sell Kareem’s training regiment over the internet and at local convenient stores once his abs are trending on Twitter.

3. The Kareem Abdul-JabBar-B-Q — We have blended the beloved BBQ & smoke house with the allure of a Brazilian steakhouse. We will be serving all-you-can-eat smoked meats such as brisket and pork ribs on skewers. Nothing fancy here, just eating good southern meats on sharp metal sticks until you get meat-fatigued.

4. JabBarf Bags — James Dyson already blessed the vacuum cleaner industry with a makeover, so we’ve decided to bring fine design and sex appeal to airplane barf bags. The current folded-up, drab, navy-colored barf bags look like they were pulled straight out of a nursing home. Our new JabBarf bags will be of vibrant colors and feature a miniature hoop and net to vomit through, making a once disgusting and embarrassing act, something fun and interactive. We will integrate the bags with our “Sky-hurling” smart phone application (currently in beta testing) so people can play against their friends and loved ones.

5. Kareem AbDueling Pianos — Watch out ‘Howl at the moon;’ Kareem’s AbDueling Piano bar has ‘one-upped’ you. Unlike your traditional dueling piano bar, we have a KY jelly-covered mechanical bull. We are aware this is not at all thematic but we can not think of anything more appealing to your everyday consumer.

The five ventures above pose as simple proof that there are plenty of industries begging to be infiltrated by the once-relevant stars of our generation. Instead of wallowing in the past and sulking in your post-MVP depression, find something creative to pursue and then drive all of your competitors out of business. Besides, now that you don’t have a multi-million dollar salary, you’ll need to find a way to make ends meet… Or you could just ride on Papa John’s coattail (eyes still on you, Peyton).

Originally published at

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