E:60 features Penny Hardaway and his Lester Lions

Penny Hardaway will likely be coming back to Orlando at some point this year as part of the team's 25th Anniversary. Hardaway had some business to take care of first.

As has been noted elsewhere, specifically on CNN and in a book by reporter Wayne Drash, Hardaway has returned home to Memphis to assist a lifelong friend coach middle school basketball. The first question is what is a former All-NBA First Team player doing coaching middle school basketball?


That answer really does not matter. Hardaway is making an impact in the Memphis community in an area that needs the help. As he describes on an E:60 feature that ran earlier this week, the area Hardaway grew up is called "the bowl" because it is notoriously difficult to climb out of.

Hardaway climbed out of it, only to voluntarily climb back in and help others climb out in the way he can. Hardaway took over as coach of the Lester Middle School Tigers and led them to the state middle school championship.

Penny's career did not end the way he wanted. But his life and his impact is going exactly how you would want. Penny continues to make an impact on and off the court influencing the lives of young players and young men in his community.

Philip Rossman-Reich

About Philip Rossman-Reich

Philip Rossman-Reich is the managing editor for Crossover Chronicles and Orlando Magic Daily. You can follow him on twitter @OMagicDaily