PDA

View Full Version : Bender in the IndyStar - 7/9/08



Doddage
07-09-2008, 09:09 AM
Not sure if the content here is news, but there was a piece on Bender in the Star today. A pretty good read.

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2008807090410


http://www.indystar.com/graphics/go4/printlogo.jpg

<!--PRINTER FRIENDLY ARTICLE--> July 9, 2008

Bender's new gig
Former Pacer is helping lower income families in New Orleans area

By Rick Cleveland
The (Jackson, Miss.) Clarion-Ledger

NEW ORLEANS -- Jonathan Bender remembers the turn of the century, when he was a millionaire teenager playing for the Indiana Pacers in the NBA and all the young guns wanted to become the next Michael Jordan.

"I was different; I wanted to be the guy who owned the team," Bender said. "I wanted to be the guy who signed the checks and was at the top of the chain.

"I thought to myself, 'If there's somebody who can afford to pay us all these millions, then there's a whole 'nother world out there I don't know anything about. There's a whole 'nother level.' I wanted to be on that level."

Now 27 and retired from the NBA for two years because of arthritic knees, Bender plans to use his riches and influence to help make New Orleans, his adopted home, a more livable place post-Hurricane Katrina.

Bender's construction company buys flood-ravaged housing and restores it to better quality than it was pre-Katrina. His real estate management company then makes the property available for leasing, often to former New Orleans residents who evacuated during Katrina and are looking to return.

Bender has earned the respect of local contractors and the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority because of his attention to detail -- and his insistence that low- to middle-income housing need not be shoddy housing.

"Jonathan has done more than the government so far as providing quality housing for low- and moderate-income families," said Barbara Major, a board member of NORA, which was established to redevelop blighted housing. "He's not just throwing something together . . . He does quality work. He really cares about the people who are going to live there."

A star from the beginning

Bender grew up in Picayune, Miss., a hoops prodigy, destined for stardom.
"I can't ever remember being considered normal," he said.

Bender hit the national scene when he broke Jordan's scoring record in the 1999 McDonald's All-America Game with 31 points. The Toronto Raptors made Bender the fifth overall pick of the NBA draft straight out of high school and traded his rights to the Pacers, who signed him to a three-year, $7 million contract.

Over those three years, Bender showed enough promise despite chronic knee problems that the Pacers rewarded him with a four-year, $28.5 million deal.

"I've never seen the combination of a 7-footer who could shoot from the outside, handle the ball and jump as high as he could," former Pacers president Donnie Walsh said in 2003. "He's the only guy I've had who stopped practice with the things he did. I thought he would be a great player. Every coach I put him with couldn't believe his talent."
But Bender's knees ached constantly.

"It was such a struggle to play," he said. "My love and passion for the game got lower and lower. I was ready to move on."

He retired in 2006 and set out on a new path, one formed by his bond with Billy Ray Hobley. Bender was 12 when his father died. He met Hobley, a former Harlem Globetrotter, shortly thereafter. Hobley became Bender's basketball mentor and his second father.

Hobley believed in giving back to the community, and he stressed that, as well as basketball lessons, to young Bender. Bender moved to the New Orleans suburb of Kenner in 1999, in part to be close to Hobley and his family. Hobley died of a heart attack in 2002, when Bender was 21.

Mattie Hobley, Billy Ray's widow, ran Hobley's nonprofit charity, first in Los Angeles and then in New Orleans. She now is the director of Bender's foundation, which has adopted an elementary school in suburban Metairie, which flooded during Katrina.

Gloria Willis, principal of Joseph S. Maggiore Elementary, said, "Jonathan's been a godsend to our students. We've got 432 students, and he gave a Christmas present to every one of them. He not only provided an Easter basket for every one of them, he hid the eggs."

Taking pride in quality

Currently, Bender is most interested in his real estate ventures, which are centered in the hard-hit east New Orleans and Gentilly areas.

"Jonathan won't use cheap carpet or linoleum," said Joe Esnard III, a longtime New Orleans builder who has done much of Bender's construction work. "He wants granite countertops, oak cabinets, quality flooring, nice light fixtures. I tell him he's going overboard for rental property, but he says he wants it to look like something he'd live in himself."

Mattie Hobley has suggested to Bender that he begin work toward a college degree. Bender said that's not likely.

"I'm going through my college right now," Bender says. "I'm learning what I need to know firsthand on the job . . . I'm an entrepreneur, and I want to help people. That's who I am."

DGPR
07-09-2008, 09:11 AM
Nice to see he is putting that money he got to good use. Good for you Jonathan!

2minutes twowa
07-09-2008, 09:12 AM
Too bad his knees didn't hold up. He would've been fun to watch.

Hicks
07-09-2008, 10:19 AM
He's doing some great things in New Orleans. Good for him.

Mourning
07-09-2008, 10:30 AM
You can only respect the choice he has made. Even more so if you compare it with some of the obscene amounts of money some athletes make and then spend it on cars, more cars, houses, more houses, jewelry, more jewelry.

Offcourse, it's their money, but I like seeying what Bender does at this point. Like I said, I respect that.

Regards,

Mourning :cool:

Kraut N Beer
07-09-2008, 10:36 AM
Good to see JB doing some real good in a city that is still in dire need of help. Much of New Orleans is still in terrible condition. If JB can make a few bucks while he is also investing in the area and improving the lives of those in need, more power to him.

2minutes twowa
07-09-2008, 10:40 AM
Good to see JB doing some real good in a city that is still in dire need of help. Much of New Orleans is still in terrible condition. If JB can make a few bucks while he is also investing in the area and improving the lives of those in need, more power to him.

I agree.

Great profile pic BTW:D

Dukins
07-09-2008, 10:41 AM
I thought Bender had potential out of this world, but I think his potential to help those ravaged by the hurricane is potential that I would rather live with than playing basketball.

beast23
07-09-2008, 10:48 AM
After about 1-1/2 seasons, I'd had enough of Bender and was among the few that had already labelled him a "bust".

With some of the info that was made available to me through people I knew, I detested even more the fact that the Pacers re-signed Bender.

But I do have to admit that I am in total awe of what he is accomplishing. It makes those wasted millions for his second contract all worthwhile.

Never thought I would say it, but I applaud him.

idioteque
07-09-2008, 10:54 AM
Good for Bender. Glad to see he is putting that money to good use. JB always seemed a bit dense to me, one time reportedly leaving his garage door up all winter, but it seems like he had the presence of mind to hire a financial advisor and invest his money properly (otherwise there would be no way he could be doing what he's doing, he couldn't afford it).

Gyron
07-09-2008, 11:08 AM
I'm very glad to see that he has done something very worth while with the money he earned while with the Pacers. I was excited about him as a prospect. And disappointed when his knees prevented him from becoming a good NBA player.

Since he's building the houses the way he would want to live in them, I do hope his isn't putting in the purple rooms like he had in his Indy house.

Ownagedood
07-09-2008, 11:35 AM
Man, I miss that guy.. He was my favorite player on the team when he played.. He would have been a Kevin Garnett type guy if he was able to stay healthy.. Such a shame. :(

Glad he is doing the right thing with his money.

Peck
07-09-2008, 12:33 PM
While I'm glad Bender is doing what appears to be good work with his money I still want to state that giving him that contract extension was arguably one of the three dumbest things our franchise has ever done.

Actually two of the three dumbest things is tied to his contract extension so in truth, basketball wise, this may even top the trade of a first round pick for Tom Owens.

Kegboy
07-09-2008, 12:42 PM
this may even top the trade of a first round pick for Tom Owens.

That is beyond ridiculous.

ABADays
07-09-2008, 12:48 PM
After about 1-1/2 seasons, I'd had enough of Bender and was among the few that had already labelled him a "bust".

With some of the info that was made available to me through people I knew, I detested even more the fact that the Pacers re-signed Bender.

But I do have to admit that I am in total awe of what he is accomplishing. It makes those wasted millions for his second contract all worthwhile.

Never thought I would say it, but I applaud him.

Make note - the whistler died today with this story. Good job Jonathan. I applaud you as well.

DisplacedKnick
07-09-2008, 12:57 PM
While I'm glad Bender is doing what appears to be good work with his money I still want to state that giving him that contract extension was arguably one of the three dumbest things our franchise has ever done.

Actually two of the three dumbest things is tied to his contract extension so in truth, basketball wise, this may even top the trade of a first round pick for Tom Owens.

Yeah - I still say the Pacers should have traded him that summer. By that time it was obvious he wasn't going to become an impact player but the rest of the league hadn't cught on to it yet. But DW has always had trouble cutting his losses. One reason why I hope he's our GM for 3-4 years, no longer. We'll be better but if we get a new guy who's not an egomaniac like Zeke, the next guy can build on what he did right and get rid of his mistakes.

As a person I always liked JB - he was very active in the community, did some work with clothing drives for the less fortunate, blood drives, attended charity events, etc. But he wasn't much of a basketball player. Good to see he's still wanting to help people.

naptownmenace
07-09-2008, 01:15 PM
I was one of the few people that loved and could see his talent. He was just one of those players that we rolled the dice on and got burned. We ignored the knee problems he had before the draft and before the extention.

I'm glad he's made a good business and he's continuing to give back to a community that really needs his help. I also appreciate that he's choosing to provide quality homes instead of cutting corners for low-income housing. Major props for that!

NuffSaid
07-09-2008, 02:09 PM
It's often said that good things can come out of tragic events. For 5.11, the good has been in giving back to his adopted community using his "gift" (and I use the term very lightly) as a former NBA player to help others.

We may not have "seen it" on the hardwood, but they are seeing it down in 'Nawleans...one fine individual doing the best he can to turn frowns upside down.

Good for JB.

immortality
07-09-2008, 02:50 PM
Mattie Hobley has suggested to Bender that he begin work toward a college degree. Bender said that's not likely.

"I'm going through my college right now," Bender says. "I'm learning what I need to know firsthand on the job . . . I'm an entrepreneur, and I want to help people. That's who I am."

Real life experiences can only take you so far, college offers alot of new ideas that he will find invaluable. By saying he is not going to go to college is a bad example, even if he is doing great things.

Just look at Magic Johnson and Joe Dumars (who recently got his)

Just my 2 cents.

Unclebuck
07-09-2008, 02:54 PM
While I'm glad Bender is doing what appears to be good work with his money I still want to state that giving him that contract extension was arguably one of the three dumbest things our franchise has ever done.

Actually two of the three dumbest things is tied to his contract extension so in truth, basketball wise, this may even top the trade of a first round pick for Tom Owens.

Ok, so let me see if I understand. You are saying it was a worse decision to re-sign Bender than it was to trade Michael Jordan for Tom Owens. OK. So the upside is we could have had Jordan or if we didn't sign Bender we could have had who

Dr. Goldfoot
07-09-2008, 02:56 PM
You can only respect the choice he has made. Even more so if you compare it with some of the obscene amounts of money some athletes make and then spend it on cars, more cars, houses, more houses, jewelry, more jewelry.

Offcourse, it's their money, but I like seeying what Bender does at this point. Like I said, I respect that.

Regards,

Mourning :cool:


I agree that he's to be commended for helping out but it should be known that he did have his entire house decked out in purple velvet. It's not like he was savvy with his money but someone was evidently.

Peck
07-09-2008, 04:36 PM
To both Kegboy and Uncle Buck.

Yes, I choose to say that very deliberately because there is no guarantee that we would have chosen Michael Jordan. Remember we had the # 2 pick and Jordan went at 3.

The likely hood is that we would also have chosen the 7 foot player Sam Bowie who went on to have an injury plagued career who was also selected at # 2 by Portland. We needed a center that season so I think it is safe to assume that Bowie would have been our man as well.

So yes while that trade was hideous the outcome was never guaranteed to be Jordan.

However Benders extension cost us Brad Miller. The loss of Miller caused J.O. to put on muscle mass because he felt like he was getting thumped down low because no one could guard the big body centers like Brad did. Also Brad's ability to hit an open shot made it so J.O. was not getting double teamed.

Bender never EVER did anything to merit the extension he got. Playing H-O-R-S-E in practice does not count.

Bball
07-09-2008, 09:52 PM
For those who were ridiculed for questioning whether Bender's heart was into playing basketball:

"It was such a struggle to play," he said. "My love and passion for the game got lower and lower. I was ready to move on."

I'm glad his heart is in the right place now.

-Bball

Peck
07-09-2008, 10:01 PM
For those who were ridiculed for questioning whether Bender's heart was into playing basketball:


I'm glad his heart is in the right place now.

-Bball

I didn't have the heart to point that out. ;)

MagicRat
07-09-2008, 10:07 PM
For those who were ridiculed for saying he was actually hurt:


But Bender's knees ached constantly.

I'm glad his knees are in the right place now.....

Eindar
07-09-2008, 11:30 PM
To both Kegboy and Uncle Buck.

Yes, I choose to say that very deliberately because there is no guarantee that we would have chosen Michael Jordan. Remember we had the # 2 pick and Jordan went at 3.

The likely hood is that we would also have chosen the 7 foot player Sam Bowie who went on to have an injury plagued career who was also selected at # 2 by Portland. We needed a center that season so I think it is safe to assume that Bowie would have been our man as well.

So yes while that trade was hideous the outcome was never guaranteed to be Jordan.

However Benders extension cost us Brad Miller. The loss of Miller caused J.O. to put on muscle mass because he felt like he was getting thumped down low because no one could guard the big body centers like Brad did. Also Brad's ability to hit an open shot made it so J.O. was not getting double teamed.

Bender never EVER did anything to merit the extension he got. Playing H-O-R-S-E in practice does not count.

Still ridiculous. Signing Bender to an extension had little to do with re-signing Brad Miller. We had his Bird Rights, we could have given him the max had we chose to. Time has proven that Brad Miller wasn't worth the contract he signed, and it would have been foolish for us to top that ridiculous offer from Sacramento.

Even if we'd never traded for Bender, signing Brad Miller to a huge contract would have been a mistake. If anything, making one mistake prevented a smaller one. Also, you're saying we can't make the leap that we might have drafted Jordan, yet you're making the leap that signing Bender somehow caused JO to be injury prone. That's a bit of a double standard, don't you think? That's like saying that if we'd never traded Mark Jackson for Jalen Rose, the Brawl would have never happened...

Arcadian
07-09-2008, 11:50 PM
So after possibly the worst move in Pacer franchise history we went to the Eastern conference finals? Tough crowd or blessed franchise.

Worst franchise move? Not trading Ron fast enough.

Peck
07-10-2008, 02:21 AM
To each their own.

Hard to argue against not trading Ron though.

DisplacedKnick
07-10-2008, 06:39 AM
Still ridiculous. Signing Bender to an extension had little to do with re-signing Brad Miller. We had his Bird Rights, we could have given him the max had we chose to.

It had everything to do with Miller. DW and the Simons had commited to not going over the LT, then DW signs Bender to a contract that guarantees the only way to re-sign Brad Miller is by going over the luxury tax.

Then it got funnier when Walsh acted surprised that a 7' center coming off a contract where he made $5 million and was an all-star might actually be able to get a a con tract starting at $7 million.

The whole thing was hilarious. Nobody's been able to rival Isiah for dumbass management moves over the past few years as a whole but DW sure provided some priceless moments.

Unclebuck
07-10-2008, 08:54 AM
.

However Benders extension cost us Brad Miller. The loss of Miller caused J.O. to put on muscle mass because he felt like he was getting thumped down low because no one could guard the big body centers like Brad did. Also Brad's ability to hit an open shot made it so J.O. was not getting double teamed.

Bender never EVER did anything to merit the extension he got. Playing H-O-R-S-E in practice does not count.

I just want to mention one thing about Bender, I know this sounds crazy now, but at the time the extension made a lot of sense - it was 4 years (the shortest of the 3 extensions the Pacers signed at the time) plus the bottom line is Bender had too much potential not to re-sign. I was convinced from what I saw during the games that he was going to be a star player - and he showed some signs.

I think the notion that JO's injuries over the years were the direct or indirect result of not having Brad is just absurd. JO never guarded the big body centers (who they were and are, I honestly have no idea besides Shaq and Pollard guarded him anyway) anyway, while Brad was here or after Brad left. But I always ask who the big body centers were, because I don't know of any besides Shaq - I mean there is Yao, but Pacers only play him twice a year and he's always injured anyway. Pistons never had any big body centers. (Besides Brad couldn't guard anyone - if you ask me - I honesly cannot think of a single player Brad guarded better than Jeff)

Sorry, for going off on a tangent. let me address the idea that Brad didn't allow teams to double team JO. Teams never doubled JO with another big anyway, they almost always brought the point giuard to double, so having Brad or not having Brad did impact the direct double teams. But yes Brad is an excellent passer and a great midrange shooter, so yes teams had to guard him certainly moreso than Jeff. So, Brad did give JO a little more room in the low post - but defensively Jeff and JO were a much better tandem than Brad and JO.

Beyond all that I just reject the entire notion that if Brad was kept that JO would have been healthy - I just don't think so. JO is injury prone whether he is playing beside Shaq or Brad Miller.


OK, I think that is enough for now

RamBo_Lamar
07-10-2008, 11:07 AM
One of my favorite Bender memories is from a game against Miami where
he got really mad at the ref for calling a ticky-tacky offensive foul on him.

On the next possession, Tins lobbed an alley-oop from the top of the circle
to Bender who went up to almost the top of the backboard to grab it and
throw down a thunderous dunk, prompting Pat Riley to immediately call
time-out.

As for what Bender is doing now, it is sort humbling to learn about him having
this inner substance that we never really saw when he was here. It's a
great story, and I'm glad he is doing great things with himself and for others.

Hicks
07-10-2008, 11:38 AM
I was just looking for Bender highlights on youtube (surprisingly few are there; I thought some Pacer fans might have posted his eye-popping dunks).

I did find this, which is from last July and on topic to the thread:

dDwEBdclCxg

Roaming Gnome
07-10-2008, 06:37 PM
To both Kegboy and Uncle Buck.

However Benders extension cost us Brad Miller. The loss of Miller caused J.O. to put on muscle mass because he felt like he was getting thumped down low because no one could guard the big body centers like Brad did. Also Brad's ability to hit an open shot made it so J.O. was not getting double teamed.


With the latest revelations, maybe that was a good thing. I'd hate for him to have smoked this whole time, only to get busted now when it looks like we've turned the PR corner.

Peck
07-10-2008, 06:48 PM
With the latest revelations, maybe that was a good thing. I'd hate for him to have smoked this whole time, only to get busted now when it looks like we've turned the PR corner.

True enough.

To be honest this one caught me by suprise. But you are correct, the last thing the Pacers need is for there to be any more of this nonsense.

However he does have one small excuse, if you had to deal with Ron Artest you would probably need something to get through the day as well. ;)

Roaming Gnome
07-10-2008, 06:50 PM
True enough.

To be honest this one caught me by suprise. But you are correct, the last thing the Pacers need is for there to be any more of this nonsense.

However he does have one small excuse, if you had to deal with Ron Artest you would probably need something to get through the day as well. ;)

QFT :eyebrow:

Hicks
07-10-2008, 06:51 PM
True enough.

To be honest this one caught me by suprise. But you are correct, the last thing the Pacers need is for there to be any more of this nonsense.

However he does have one small excuse, if you had to deal with Ron Artest you would probably need something to get through the day as well. ;)

At least by the time it's your third team together. ;)

Eindar
07-10-2008, 11:53 PM
At least by the time it's your third team together. ;)

Seriously. If I were Brad, as soon as me or Ron were traded, I'd file for a restraining order. Dude's a stalker.

Eindar
07-11-2008, 03:18 AM
I just want to mention one thing about Bender, I know this sounds crazy now, but at the time the extension made a lot of sense - it was 4 years (the shortest of the 3 extensions the Pacers signed at the time) plus the bottom line is Bender had too much potential not to re-sign. I was convinced from what I saw during the games that he was going to be a star player - and he showed some signs.

I think the notion that JO's injuries over the years were the direct or indirect result of not having Brad is just absurd. JO never guarded the big body centers (who they were and are, I honestly have no idea besides Shaq and Pollard guarded him anyway) anyway, while Brad was here or after Brad left. But I always ask who the big body centers were, because I don't know of any besides Shaq - I mean there is Yao, but Pacers only play him twice a year and he's always injured anyway. Pistons never had any big body centers. (Besides Brad couldn't guard anyone - if you ask me - I honesly cannot think of a single player Brad guarded better than Jeff)

Sorry, for going off on a tangent. let me address the idea that Brad didn't allow teams to double team JO. Teams never doubled JO with another big anyway, they almost always brought the point giuard to double, so having Brad or not having Brad did impact the direct double teams. But yes Brad is an excellent passer and a great midrange shooter, so yes teams had to guard him certainly moreso than Jeff. So, Brad did give JO a little more room in the low post - but defensively Jeff and JO were a much better tandem than Brad and JO.

Beyond all that I just reject the entire notion that if Brad was kept that JO would have been healthy - I just don't think so. JO is injury prone whether he is playing beside Shaq or Brad Miller.


OK, I think that is enough for now

I agree with this post 100%, especially the part about Bender's contract. I think DW did the best he could with that situation. On one hand, if you let him walk to some other team and he turns into Kevin Garnett with guard skills, you've made the biggest blunder since Bowie over Jordan. On the other, if you wrap him up to a 7 year deal and he doesn't ever pan out, he'll be on the books forever. At the time, a 4 year deal wasn't a long contract like it is now, so DW hedged his bets, and as it turns out, that was probably a good idea.

Bball
07-11-2008, 03:35 AM
The Bender debate is always amusing to me. The counter argument to those that thought Bender was looking like a bust and that DW had made a tremendous mistake in extending him (if not taking him in the first place) is that if he hadn't have been a bust he would've been a superstar and DW was extremely wise to hang onto him with an extension.

....But the thing is... Bender was a bust. There's no other way to look at it.

I can't see any way of saying I was wrong about predicting Bender being a bust. ...Altho I'll agree if Bender hadn't been a bust then the extension would've made some sense.... except he was a bust.

Eindar
07-11-2008, 03:56 AM
The Bender debate is always amusing to me. The counter argument to those that thought Bender was looking like a bust and that DW had made a tremendous mistake in extending him (if not taking him in the first place) is that if he hadn't have been a bust he would've been a superstar and DW was extremely wise to hang onto him with an extension.

....But the thing is... Bender was a bust. There's no other way to look at it.

I can't see any way of saying I was wrong about predicting Bender being a bust. ...Altho I'll agree if Bender hadn't been a bust then the extension would've made some sense.... except he was a bust.

Actually, there are other ways of "looking at it".

The way you're looking at it, Len Bias was also a bust, as were Clark Kellogg and Steve Stipanovich.

I think it's accepted fact that Bender's knees were what ended his career, not his (in)ability to play basketball. I refuse to label someone who medically could not continue to play the game as a "bust".

Also, to say that Bender wasn't developing is a bit of revisionist history, and if you (re)watch the few games he played the last two seasons, you'll see that he was developing, and in fact was developing a solid post game to go with those drives, dunks, and spot up 3s that were so easy to defend. Also, his defense was improving, along with his court awareness. He got the "deer in the headlights" look far less often when he was healthy enough to play.

Call him a mistake or an unfortunate cautionary tale, but to label him a bust, in my opinion, is too harsh.

TheSauceMaster
07-11-2008, 04:55 AM
For those who were ridiculed for saying he was actually hurt:



I'm glad his knees are in the right place now.....

I'm Speechless :eek:

:laugh:

YoSoyIndy
07-11-2008, 07:51 PM
The Bender debate is always amusing to me. The counter argument to those that thought Bender was looking like a bust and that DW had made a tremendous mistake in extending him (if not taking him in the first place) is that if he hadn't have been a bust he would've been a superstar and DW was extremely wise to hang onto him with an extension.

....But the thing is... Bender was a bust. There's no other way to look at it.

I can't see any way of saying I was wrong about predicting Bender being a bust. ...Altho I'll agree if Bender hadn't been a bust then the extension would've made some sense.... except he was a bust.

The only reason you can claim Bender was a bust is if you believed he was going to be a bust based on being injury prone. It's a classic case of Outcome Bias if not -- that is, judging a past decision by its outcome instead of the quality of the decision at the time given what was known. You're holding someone responsible for something they couldn't have known (assuming no tests showed a significant risk of knee problems).

Bender showed solid play when he was healthy (all 2 1/2 games).

Other examples of this logical fallacy fall on post-draft analysis. IE -- we should have drafted Tony Parker even though the story at the time was that he wasn't coming to USA for at least two years. Sure, you'd obviously want to take him now, but at the time we didn't know the guy was going to play right away (and play so well).

YoSoyIndy
07-11-2008, 07:53 PM
I remember when Bender played the last few minutes at Fan Appreciation Night in 2000. It seemed like he went up over 15 feet for an alley oop (which he missed, but still, at that point everyone in the building thought he was the next coming).

DisplacedKnick
07-11-2008, 10:13 PM
The only reason you can claim Bender was a bust is if you believed he was going to be a bust based on being injury prone. It's a classic case of Outcome Bias if not -- that is, judging a past decision by its outcome instead of the quality of the decision at the time given what was known. You're holding someone responsible for something they couldn't have known (assuming no tests showed a significant risk of knee problems).


No - he was going to be a bust based on his play. I said so after his third season - the one season he was healthy. He'd had enough PT to prove rather substantially that he'd never be an impact player in the NBA.

He was a 7-footer who wanted to play exclusively on the perimeter. You know what you do with a 7-foot perimeter player? You put a 6-6 guy on him and completely neutralize him.

You can't put a 6-6 guy on Dirk Nowitzki because he'll post him up and obliterate him. You can't put a 6-6 guy on KG for the same reason. But you could do that with Bender because he showed no inclination or ability to be effective in the post.

The only way Bender could ever have been effective is if he could have become a PF and developed a post game. Guess what - the Pacers had JO. And guess what #2 - Bender didn't show any affinity for playing in the post.

His top end was to possibly become a decent 7th or 8th man. A guy you could bring in off the bench for some quick scoring before the defense adjusted to him.

And that doesn't even address his inability to guard anyone - not quick enough on the perimeter or strong enough in the post. But he was good for one highlight dunk or block every game so folks could go ga-ga over a player who was all flash and no cash.

But he was still a nice guy. Very community oriented. But not much of a basketball player from an NBA perspective. He should have been a high jumper.

Eindar
07-11-2008, 11:24 PM
No - he was going to be a bust based on his play. I said so after his third season - the one season he was healthy. He'd had enough PT to prove rather substantially that he'd never be an impact player in the NBA.

He was a 7-footer who wanted to play exclusively on the perimeter. You know what you do with a 7-foot perimeter player? You put a 6-6 guy on him and completely neutralize him.

You can't put a 6-6 guy on Dirk Nowitzki because he'll post him up and obliterate him. You can't put a 6-6 guy on KG for the same reason. But you could do that with Bender because he showed no inclination or ability to be effective in the post.

The only way Bender could ever have been effective is if he could have become a PF and developed a post game. Guess what - the Pacers had JO. And guess what #2 - Bender didn't show any affinity for playing in the post.

His top end was to possibly become a decent 7th or 8th man. A guy you could bring in off the bench for some quick scoring before the defense adjusted to him.

And that doesn't even address his inability to guard anyone - not quick enough on the perimeter or strong enough in the post. But he was good for one highlight dunk or block every game so folks could go ga-ga over a player who was all flash and no cash.

But he was still a nice guy. Very community oriented. But not much of a basketball player from an NBA perspective. He should have been a high jumper.

He had a post game before he retired. Like I said, go re-watch, or maybe in your case, watch for the first time those last two seasons. It's only about 10 games, but he was drawing double teams in the post, and didn't look lost on defense.

JonnyB83
07-12-2008, 06:54 PM
good job JB. this is nice to hear.

ABADays
07-12-2008, 08:27 PM
The way you're looking at it, Len Bias was also a bust

Uh . . . Y E A H . . . I certainly would call Bias a bust. One of the monumental moments of stupidity in sports history.

Eindar
07-12-2008, 11:22 PM
Uh . . . Y E A H . . . I certainly would call Bias a bust. One of the monumental moments of stupidity in sports history.

You act like Bias was the only basketball player in the '70s and '80 to ever try cocaine. Len Bias is a cautionary tale to young players (and young people in general) to be careful of what you're doing, and not let peer pressure get the better of you. For me, the word "bust" never came into it, because Len Bias never had a chance to prove whether he could or couldn't play basketball, and it's not like he was some horrible person who couldn't get past his drug addiction, and that's what kept him off the court. He made a mistake.

YoSoyIndy
07-13-2008, 08:14 PM
No - he was going to be a bust based on his play. I said so after his third season - the one season he was healthy. He'd had enough PT to prove rather substantially that he'd never be an impact player in the NBA.

He was a 7-footer who wanted to play exclusively on the perimeter. You know what you do with a 7-foot perimeter player? You put a 6-6 guy on him and completely neutralize him.

You can't put a 6-6 guy on Dirk Nowitzki because he'll post him up and obliterate him. You can't put a 6-6 guy on KG for the same reason. But you could do that with Bender because he showed no inclination or ability to be effective in the post.

The only way Bender could ever have been effective is if he could have become a PF and developed a post game. Guess what - the Pacers had JO. And guess what #2 - Bender didn't show any affinity for playing in the post.

His top end was to possibly become a decent 7th or 8th man. A guy you could bring in off the bench for some quick scoring before the defense adjusted to him.

And that doesn't even address his inability to guard anyone - not quick enough on the perimeter or strong enough in the post. But he was good for one highlight dunk or block every game so folks could go ga-ga over a player who was all flash and no cash.

But he was still a nice guy. Very community oriented. But not much of a basketball player from an NBA perspective. He should have been a high jumper.

Your argument discounts how injured he was throughout the second season and part of the third. If it's not about his injury, then why are you basing when he became a bust during an area when he was either injured or coming off injuries?

The bottom line is he was always injured or coming off injuries. I'm not saying he should have been a superstar, but I am saying I think it is unfair to judge a guy who was consistently hurt.

DisplacedKnick
07-13-2008, 10:12 PM
Your argument discounts how injured he was throughout the second season and part of the third. If it's not about his injury, then why are you basing when he became a bust during an area when he was either injured or coming off injuries?

The bottom line is he was always injured or coming off injuries. I'm not saying he should have been a superstar, but I am saying I think it is unfair to judge a guy who was consistently hurt.

He was not injured at all during his third season. I'm not aware that he was injured his second - just that he didn't play much.