Mookie Blaylock upgraded to serious

Updated: June 2, 2013, 8:15 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

ATLANTA -- Former NBA All-Star guard Mookie Blaylock was upgraded to serious condition at an Atlanta hospital Saturday, a day after his SUV crashed head-on into a van and killed a woman.

Atlanta Medical Center spokeswoman Nicole Gustin confirmed that the 46-year-old Blaylock's condition had improved since he was airlifted to the hospital. Police said the former Atlanta Hawks player was initially placed on life support and was in critical condition late Friday even after he was taken off it.

[+] EnlargeDaron
AP Photo/WSB-TVIn this image taken from video, an SUV sits near the scene of a crash involving former NBA All-Star guard Mookie Blaylock on Friday outside Atlanta.

Blaylock, originally from Dallas, was driving in neighboring Jonesboro on Friday afternoon when he crashed, said Clayton County police spokesman Clarence Cox. Police said his SUV crossed the center line and slammed into an oncoming van.

A passenger in the van, 43-year-old Monica Murphy, died Friday night, Jonesboro Police Chief Franklin Allen said. Her husband, 41-year-old Frankie Murphy, suffered a broken ankle. According to USA Today Sports, Allen said Blaylock could face charges after a discussion next week involving investigators and the district attorney. 

Allen told WSB-TV in Atlanta that Blaylock has had "a history of seizures," and police were trying to find out if a seizure may have led to the accident. 

Blaylock was a first-round draft pick by the New Jersey Nets out of Oklahoma in 1989.

He played for the Hawks between 1992 and 1999, appeared in the 1994 NBA All-Star Game and had his best season in 1996-97, averaging 17.4 points and 5.9 assists.

In 13 NBA seasons with New Jersey, Atlanta and Golden State, he averaged 13.5 points and 6.2 assists.

Blaylock earned a footnote in rock 'n' roll history in the early 1990s when the band Pearl Jam, before taking that name, for a short period called itself Mookie Blaylock. The band titled its 1991 debut album "Ten," which was Blaylock's jersey number.

A message posted on Pearl Jam's official Twitter feed Friday said: "Sending good thoughts to Mookie."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.