When former Milwaukee Bucks center walked away from the sport, he was a broken man, having been penalized several times for marijuana and as a matter of saving face, the Bucks bought out his contract. After a year, Sanders is making noise as he hints an NBA comeback by making himself available during the free agency season this summer.
Following his contract buyout from the Bucks, Sanders was reportedly enrolled into a program at Rogers Memorial Hospital for anxiety, depression and mood disorders. Sanders said that the program made him realize the importance of life and what he needs to do to preserve his.
“For [basketball] to be consuming so much of my life and time right now … it’s not there for me. It’s not that worth it. If I get to a point where I feel I’m capable of playing basketball again, then I will come back,” Sanders said
Sanders even stated that he wanted to formally thank the Bucks organization for all the opportunity and for the fans, who have been supportive to the team as well. He stressed that walking away was not about them it was for “the good” of his family.
“I wish I could have said goodbye formally to the Bucks at the Bradley Center,” he said. “I want them to know it was never about them, the fans or how they treated me, because it was awesome. These decisions are for my family,” Sanders added.
I hope Larry Sanders realizes that basketball & the money he's making is not worth losing over some weed…. pic.twitter.com/aS3sFhvy3t
— Eugene Jones (@Hugo_Jones1) January 25, 2015
Imagine the Bucks if Parker didn't get hurt and Larry Sanders put the weed away.
— T'Challa Cage (@MadDapr) April 18, 2015
Man, if Larry Sanders left nearly half his money on the table just to quit, he must have serious issues. What a tragic situation.
— No Tech Ben (@NoTechBen) February 18, 2015
Aside from his substance abuse, Sanders told Shams Charania of The Vertical that he plans to work on his “off-court ventures” and once everything is good, he plans for an NBA comeback. He added that he is a “valuable” asset to any team especially inside the paint.
“Once my art, music and passions off the court feel stable, I will look into coming back. I still love basketball. I want stability around me, and part of my mindset to leave was not to put all my eggs in one basket. I feel highly valuable on any team. There aren’t a lot of people who can bring my game to a team. I still play basketball all the time, staying in shape. I will need to make sure the situation is right for me,” Sanders explained.
Despite his off court struggles, Sanders narrated that he wanted to find that excitement in playing basketball again like the way he used to. He wants that as his motivation to comeback and since his music and art are doing well, making that comeback would be more easier if he would start cleansing himself not only of substance but also with his mental state for teams to want his services again.
Sanders is now ready to face reality that he may or may not make any comeback in the NBA as the decisions will be coming from teams around the league. And at six-foot-11 for sure most of the teams would want to hire him such as the Bucks as everybody gets a second chance.
Photo Courtesy: Keith Allison/Flickr