Caron Butler was signed by the Detroit Pistons in part to provide some veteran leadership on a young team desperately in need of some. Often times, veteran leadership is a red flag -- a sign of trying to put a positive spin on a player whose best days are clearly behind him.
But in Butler's case you don't have to check his box score or chart his 3-point percentage to understand why the former all-star will command respect in the locker room. Instead you just have to know a little bit about his life, including his upbringing in Racine, Wisconsin.
It's been told before, but many Pistons fans might not be aware of just how much life Butler has lived, and how lucky he is to have the chance to play NBA basketball and help others avoid the mistakes of his past -- a past that includes drug dealing and numerous arrests.
VICE Sports recently took a tour with Butler of his home town as he recounted his struggles early in life and his need to make a difference for youth that are going through what he was fortunate enough to escape.
Of course, VICE isn't the first group to tell this story. And you can get a fuller picture in this Fox Sports piece that was released in February.