Former Iowa State University basketball star Fred Hoiberg is headed to Detroit to talk about joining the Pistons for the remainder of the N-B-A season. Hoiberg, who is 33 years old, has played for the Indiana Pacers, the Chicago Bulls and the Minnesota Timerwolves. He was with the Timberwolves in 2004 when he had routine heart tests in order to get a new life insurance policy. The tests revealed a problem with the aorta in his heart, and that quickly sent him into open heart surgery. He now has a pacemaker.
“Right now I’m trying to make a decision if I can come back and play. My goal this whole season has been to get myself in the type of shape that if I want to play, I’ll be able to do that,” Hoiberg says. Hoiberg, a native of Ames, leaves tonight for Detroit. Hoiberg says it will have to be a “special situation” or he won’t return for the rest of the N-B-A season.
One of the reasons is Hoiberg wants to play for “a contender” and he says with his old Timberwolves coach now at the helm in Detroit, things might work out. But if they don’t, Hoiberg is ready to either try to return next season, or move on to what he calls “the next phase of (his) life.” “Hopefully basketball is the next phase of my life,” Hoiberg says. “…Hopefully I can play for a couple of more years if my body allows and if the doctors say it’s okay, which they have, and then I can make that decision when it comes.” Hoiberg hopes his “long-term future” is with the Timberwolves, although Hoiberg says he has talked about some “great opportunities” in Iowa and at Iowa State.
Hoiberg was at the statehouse today, speaking at an Iowa Soybean Association event. Hoiberg will be inducted into the Iowa High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame during next week’s state boys’ basketball tournament.