Snell was pushing to sign with an NBA team by February 2 in order to gain retirement benefits for players with at least 10 years of service.

Tony Snell had stints with the Chicago Bulls, Milwaukee Bucks, Detroit Pistons, Atlanta Hawks, and New Orleans Pelicans.

Tony Snell captured the hearts and minds of countless fans, as well as current and former NBA stars, this week by revealing his personal plight. The 32-year-old journeyman, currently without an NBA contract, needed to be signed by a pro franchise before the February 2. deadline in order to clinch health benefits that would be instrumental for the care of his two autistic children: Karter (3) and Kenzo (2).

Everyone from NBA legend Charles Barkley and Nuggets forward Aaron Gordon made strong public pleas that sadly went unanswered. Barkley made a TV appearance on TNT and said that if “the NBA is truly the family it claims, it will make sure someone signs Snell”. Meanwhile, Gordon took to social media and begged the league to “do the right thing!”.

With the deadline having passed, Tony Snell will not be eligible for the benefits available to 10-year players under the collective bargaining agreement. Snell’s two sons have recently been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, and Snell revealed he found out he had the same diagnosis when he was 31-years-old.

With more than three years of NBA experience under his belt, Snell already unlocked lifetime health benefits for himself. But his children would only fall under the same umbrella if he hit the 10-year threshold which he was only one season away from achieving.

The fact no NBA team came forward for Snell, if only for the good PR, came as a surprise. Especially since he has kept in game shape as an active member of the G League’s Maine Celtics. This season, he has appeared in 14 games in the NBA’s development league.

While Snell missed out on the league’s benefits for his family, the hope is that private donations will help the 6″6 SG/SF secure the medical assistance he needs for his sons medical needs to be met for the foreseeable future.

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