Andersen, who had emigrated from Denmark, often would talk about his faraway adventures and persuaded Linda to move in with him. As soon as he emerges from the locker room at the Sawyer Center, the Hornets' temporary practice facility on the campus of Southern Nazarene University in Oklahoma City, it overtakes you.
The rowdy, shoulder-length blond locks cover his face, Cousin Itt-style."Whassup, pimp?
But the door to redemption swung wide open two years later. During his first four seasons in the NBA, Andersen was known for his wildly athletic dunks and reckless intensity.
On March 4, the NBA reinstated Andersen, and his former team, the New Orleans Hornets, signed him to a contract for the remainder of the season. He hadn't developed any real moves to speak of, and even a 10-foot pull-up jumper was ill-advised for him.
Chris "The Birdman" Andersen is back with the New Orleans Hornets after serving a two-year ban for violating the league's anti-drug policy. A life in which she wouldn't have to push a janitor's broom or tend bar, which one of her Harley buddies owned.
Normally, this would be a happy time for his family. Chris Andersen was going to buy his mother a house. If he just helped her pay for her meds, that would be enough. Linda Holubec was there that November night in 2001, when the Denver Nuggets called her son with the news that they were signing him to a deal that would end his vagabond lifestyle.
Bower didn't have to say a word; Andersen knew he had tested positive. Scott had started to suspect something when Andersen regularly began missing practices and shootarounds.
Her two-dozen tattoos, including permanent cherry red lips and black eyeliner, are a product of her days running with the notorious Bandidos biker gang.
Scott, in turn, called Andersen over to the sideline.
The results of his recent drug test had come back from the league. Then he immediately left the gym and cleaned out his locker.
Though polite and maternalistic -- "Can I get you some tea?
" she often asks -- her charmingly rough edges and tough-girl disposition served her well amongst the double crossers and miscreants that tend to populate a hardscrabble life.