The former number one overall pick played 10 years in the NBA, and finished with over 12,000 career points, 5,000 rebounds, and 1,000 blocks.
Drafted in 1980 by the Golden State Warriors, Carroll was tasked with going up against the great big men of the 80’s -- Hakeem Olajuwon, Patrick Ewing, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, and Kevin Mchale. Despite the tough competition of the decade, Carroll was selected for the 1987 NBA-All Star game.
“At 7’0” and 260 to 270 pounds, I was a finesse player. And some people don’t like their big men shooting jumpers with a feathery touch. They like a primal, kind of animalistic player, and I was not that player. But if you wanted somebody that could give you 25 to 30 points a night, I was your guy,” says Carroll.
Athletes are constantly under the microscope of the media and fans. Every move is scrutinized. Sports prepared Carroll for the scrutiny as a businessman.
As Carroll began his career after basketball, he initially found it difficult to command the respect from potential clients and partners across the conference table as a businessman rather than a basketball player.
“There’s a whole population that enjoys players when they’re in their place as a player. It’s easy for them to accept that. But when I set up a table and begin to command the deference that someone across the table from me does, it becomes a little bit different for them,” says Carroll.
As a wealth advisor, Carroll manages portfolios of millions of dollars for his clients. The business idea started when Carroll as a player could not find quality advisors at a specific price point. Then, developing and retooling a business model around services he wanted as a player.
Similar to sports, investment portfolio development is measurable. No matter the debate, the numbers do not lie. If anyone challenges his credibility, Carroll’s portfolio stats is the equalizer.
“With money management, and I’m working with a client and someone challenges me, I can show them my numbers,” says Carroll.
The barrage of criticisms Carroll faced shaped a stronger mental psyche. Recently, Carroll took a leap into art. Art is inherently subjective. Carroll has learned, in part from his basketball career that not everyone will like what he does. Regardless, what others think, he finds his own inspiration for his work.
“I think most artists are vessels in which things come through us. Each piece you do, you start out with an attitude and a perspective, and over time the work starts to have a life and a breath of its own. But the intention is what’s most critical. What did you intend? And where did you start out? From there you can work it out,” says Carroll.
In 2014, he published a coffee table book and memoir, “Growing Up… in Words and Images”. The book showcases 70 paintings that are figuratively and literally drawn from his experiences.
“Whatever my outcome is, I try a lot of different things but I try to keep moving. With someone who is trying as much as I’m inclined to try, like art, investments, basketball, and in terms of just my general interests, all of it doesn’t work out. So one of the things I’m proud of is that I keep going. I have to get up and move forward. If I succeeded then I try to build on my success. If I failed, I try to recover from that failure,” says Carroll.