Stephen Jesse Jackson is a professional basketball player from the USA and plays as a swing man, which means that he can play as a small forward or as a shooting guard depending on his team’s needs. Jackson attended the Lincoln High School in Port Arthur but soon moved to the Oak Hill Academy in Virginia. He played basketball with the Oak Hill Academy and went on to win All-America honours in 1996.
In the 1996 McDonald’s All-American game, he was the leading scorer in a team that also boasted of the likes of Kobe Bryant, Jermaine O’Neal and Tim Thomas. Although he was scheduled to join the University of Arizona, he was deemed ineligible due to his academics and had to spend one semester at the Butler Community College.
In 1997, he applied for the NBA Draft and was picked at 43rd overall, by the Phoenix Suns. However, the team waived him off in October without giving him a single chance to get onto the court. Jackson moved to the CBA and joined the La Crosse Bobcats for two seasons. He average just 12.7 minutes per game and had an average of 2.7 ppg. At the time, he had also had a short stint with the Sydney Kings in the National Basketball League of Australia. He also played in Venezuela and the Dominican Republic.
He returned to the USA in the 2000-01 season and joined the New Jersey Nets to begin his official rookie season. He had 77 games of which he started 40, averaging 8.2 ppg. He was also picked for the Schick Rookie Game at the All-Star weekend.
After just a single season at the Nets, Jackson moved to the San Antonio Spurs but injuries forced him to miss almost 45 games. He only managed to play 9.9 minutes per game and had a 3.9 ppg along with 1.1 rebounds per game. The following year, things looked better as he made 80 appearances averaging 11.8 points, 2.3 assists and 3.6 rebounds per 28.2 minutes. Jackson was vital in helping the Spurs win their second NBA title after being their third highest scorer in the post-season with 12.8 points per game.
At the end of the season, Jackson’s contract wasn’t renewed by the Spurs and that meant that he was a free agent. The Atlanta Hawks picked him up for what was to be his best season till date. Jackson averaged at 18.1 points with 3.1 assists and 4.6 rebounds per game. His career-high 42-point game came against the Washington Wizards and after the All-Star break, he raised the numbers to read 24.0 ppg with 5.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game to become the 6th leading scorer in the NBA for that season.