Caron Butler Returns Home

Mar 7, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Los Angeles Clippers small forward Caron Butler (5) controls the ball in the first quarter against the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

16 years ago, Caron Butler was playing basketball for Racine Park High School in Racine, Wisconsin and trying to survive a tough home life. Much has been made about the tough time Butler had growing up, including multiple trips to detention facilities before he even made it to high school. But since then, Butler has gone on to star at the University of Connecticut, make 2 NBA All-Star teams and win a championship in his 12 NBA seasons.

Recently, Butler became the newest member of the Milwaukee Bucks when he was traded from the Pheonix Suns in exchange for Ish Smith and Viacheslav Kravtsov.

Thursday, he returned home.

Back in his old gym at Racine Park High School, Butler held his introductory press conference earlier today in front of media, family members and numerous students and faculty.

Emotional as always, Butler said he was “extremely happy” about being back home.

While holding back tears, Butler told the crowd,

“Y’all see me crying at press conferences and at other things all the time – draft night – but it’s a different emotion now because this is a dream come true. This is something that I always dreamed about, thought about. I never thought it would happen. So it’s special. Thank you.”

Butler also expressed excitement about playing in Milwaukee, saying,

“Wearing a Bucks uniform, having Racine and Milwaukee standing up proud and loud, that’s going to be extremely special.”

It seems Butler is a lock for the starting small forward spot with the Bucks, but discussions about his on-court impact can be saved for another time and another day.

Today was about Caron Butler coming home. As Bucks GM John Hammond noted, Butler is a constant figure in the Racine community, where he contributes in numerous ways.

A native of Milwaukee myself, it made me happy to see Butler so moved, so genuinely happy to be back home in Racine and playing in Milwaukee. So best of luck to you, Caron. Keep making the Milwaukee, Racine and NBA communities better places.