We knew this was coming and Saturday it became official: The Bucks and Larry Sanders have parted ways.
The two sides reached an agreement on a buyout that will pay Sanders between $13 million and $15 million (depending upon which report you believe) of the $33 million he is still owed after this season. The Bucks will use the stretch provision on his contract to lessen the hit to their salary cap (he will remain on the books for seven seasons but at a greatly reduced cap number).
“We believe this decision is in the best interest of our team,” Bucks GM John Hammond said in a released statement. “We wish Larry well and remain excited about the future of the Bucks organization.”
Larry Sanders has played just 50 games the last two seasons for the Bucks. Last season there was a nightclub brawl left him with an injured thumb in need of a surgery. Then there were the charges of animal cruelty. At the end of last season, he missed five games for a drug suspension. This season he missed time for personal reasons. Then came a 10-game suspension from the league for marijuana use (he failed at least four tests to get there). That suspension was extended past the 10 games. It was time for the two sides to move on.
There were teams with some interest in Sanders — the Clippers and Mavericks specifically, maybe others — but Steve Kyler of BasketballInsiders.com says that’s not where Sanders’ camp is right now.
Whether or not Sanders returns to the court, let’s hope he can get his personal demons under control and can sort out what he wants in life.