Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Months after announcing retirement, Bender waived
INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indiana Pacers waived oft-injured forward Jonathan Bender on Wednesday.
Bender announced his retirement in February because of a medical condition in his knees. He played a total of just nine games for the Pacers over the last two seasons.
The 7-foot Bender has always possessed seemingly limitless potential but has been plagued by injuries throughout his career. He played just two games in 2005-06 before being sidelined by a sore left knee.
The fifth overall draft selection in 1999, Bender was dealt to Indiana by the Toronto Raptors on Aug. 8, 1999. He averaged 5.6 points and 2.2 rebounds in parts of seven seasons with the Pacers.
Bender, who was drafted straight out of high school, showed flashes of brilliance with the Pacers but never blossomed into the player the organization hoped he would be. His best season came in 2001-02 when he played in 78 games and averaged 7.4 points and 3.1 rebounds.