UPDATE: 7 p.m. EDT — NBA Commissioner Adam Silver issued a statement expressing his condolences to the family of New Orleans Pelicans’ guard Bryce Dejean-Jones after the 23-year-old died of a gunshot wound Saturday.
“The NBA family mourns the tragic loss of New Orleans Pelicans guard Bryce Dejean-Jones,” Silver said in the statement. “Bryce inspired countless people with his hard work and perseverance on his journey to the NBA, and he had a bright future in our league. Our thoughts and sympathies are with Bryce’s family and the entire Pelicans organization during this difficult time.”
The Pelicans confirmed the news of Dejean-Jones’ death in a statement Saturday afternoon:
“It is with deep sadness that the Pelicans organization acknowledges the sudden passing of Bryce Dejean-Jones. We are devastated at the loss of this young man’s life who had such a promising future ahead of him. Our thoughts and prayers are with Bryce’s family during this difficult time.”
While the details of the situation remain unclear, the Associated Press reported what authorities have disclosed about the incident to this point. They said the rookie guard was fatally shot after he broke down the door of a unit at an apartment complex in Dallas. Police were called early Saturday, and they reportedly found Dejean-Jones collapsed in an outdoor breezeway. He was taken to a hospital, where he died.
An assignment editor at KDFW-TV in Dallas posted on Twitter an image of a statement apparently made by the apartment complex’s management. The statement alleged that an individual attempted to break into the apartment of an “estranged acquaintance,” but broke into the wrong unit. After entering the apartment, “the intruder was shot,” according to the statement.
Dejean-Jones signed a three-year deal with New Orleans in February after he had previously joined the Pelicans on a pair of consecutive 10-day contracts. He averaged 5.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 19.9 minutes per game in 14 appearances last season.
During his college years, he starred for the 2014-15 Iowa State University team that won the Big 12 title and made a fourth straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament.
“This is a very, very sad and tragic day for everyone that’s a part of the Cyclone basketball family,” Iowa State head coach Steve Prohm told AP.