Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, born Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor Jr. on April 16, 1947, is a former professional basketball player who had an illustrious 20-season career in the NBA. He played for the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers, earning numerous accolades including six NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) awards. Abdul-Jabbar was a 19-time NBA All-Star, a 15-time All-NBA Team member, and an 11-time NBA All-Defensive Team selection. He achieved great success, winning six NBA championships as a player and two more as an assistant coach. Additionally, he was honored as the NBA Finals MVP on two occasions. Known as one of the greatest players of all time, Abdul-Jabbar’s remarkable skills led many to dub him the greatest basketball player ever, including Pat Riley, Isiah Thomas, and Julius Erving. Notably, he held the NBA’s career scoring record from 1984 to 2023 and received recognition on three NBA anniversary teams.
While he has always been a private individual, Abdul-Jabbar has revealed certain aspects of his personal life through his autobiographies and media interviews. In this article, we delve into the intriguing details of Abdul-Jabbar’s marital life, past relationships, and the individuals who have been a part of his journey.
Know About Abdul-Jabbar’s Ex-Wife And Their Marriage
Despite his success in the NBA, Abdul-Jabbar‘s personal life was not devoid of challenges. When it came to choosing a life partner, Abdul-Jabbar sought the guidance of his Islamic mentor, Hamaas Abdul-Khaalis, after converting to Islam at the age of 24. Surprisingly, Abdul-Jabbar allowed his mentor to select his wife for him, even though she was not the woman he truly loved. This unconventional approach resulted in Abdul-Jabbar marrying Habiba Abdul-Jabbar.
Abdul-Jabbar experienced one marriage in his lifetime, tying the knot with Habiba Abdul-Jabbar. Despite their shared moments and the birth of three children, the couple decided to separate after seven years of marriage.
Abdul-Jabbar’s marriage to Habiba Abdul-Jabbar lasted for only seven years before they divorced in 1973. Their relationship was tumultuous, and they eventually parted ways in 1978. Despite their separation, the couple remained committed to co-parenting their three children: Habiba Alcindor, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Jr., and Sultana Abdul-Jabbar. Their post-divorce relationship became amicable, reflecting their shared dedication to their children’s well-being.
During the troubled phase of his marriage, Abdul-Jabbar encountered Cheryl Pistono, who played a significant role in shaping his personal life. Cheryl, who was his mistress at the time, convinced him to end his estranged marriage and pursue a new path. Abdul-Jabbar eventually divorced Habiba and began a relationship with Cheryl, which lasted for approximately six years before they separated in 1984. Together, they had a son named Amir Abdul-Jabbar, born in 1981.
Exploring Abdul-Jabbar’s Other Relationships
Apart from his marriage and relationship with Cheryl Pistono, Abdul-Jabbar’s dating history includes connections with several high-profile personalities. During the early stages of his career, he was romantically linked with Heather Keisha Hunter, an American author, rapper, painter, and adult actress. The details of their brief encounter remain relatively unknown.
Another notable figure in Abdul-Jabbar’s life was Pam Grier, an American singer and actress known for her roles in films like “Jackie Brown” and “Foxy Brown.” Abdul-Jabbar and Grier were engaged, but their relationship did not progress further as Grier declined to convert to Islam. The couple eventually parted ways, with Grier reflecting on their failed relationship humorously.
Abdul-Jabbar’s ex-wife, Janice Brown, embraced Islam after their marriage and changed her name to Habiba. They married in 1971 but separated in 1973, finalizing their divorce in 1978. Despite their differences, they had three children together: Kareem, Sultana, and Habiba.
In addition to these relationships, Abdul-Jabbar reportedly had a low-key relationship with Julye Olds, which resulted in the birth of his youngest son, Adam Abdul-Jabbar, in 1992. However, limited information is available about the duration and conclusion of their relationship.