Len Bias, 1986
Most of the stories on this list are of the light-hearted variety, because we like to keep things positive. But drugs have a dark side, too, and there’s no sports story that illustrates that quite as well as the story of Len Bias.
The University of Maryland All-American forward was one of the most promising college players of the mid-80s, and his skills won him a spot on the Boston Celtics as the second overall pick in the 1986 draft.
Unfortunately, Bias chose to celebrate his professional career by scoring some cocaine on Washington D.C.’s notorious Montana Avenue. Returning to his dorm room, Bias snorted the coke and immediately began seizing, dying of a cardiac arrhythmia as paramedics arrived.