Milwaukee Bucks forward Chris Copeland may have moved on from the Indiana Pacers as a free agent this off-season, but he has not forgotten the support that the Pacers’ organization gave him as he recovered from a stabbing in April, reports Candace Bunker of the Indianapolis Star.
Copeland made his first return to Indianapolis on Saturday in a 123–86 win for the Pacers over the Bucks. Despite the loss, Copeland relayed how thankful he is for his former team.
“I was just blessed to have guys like Larry Bird and the training staff who stuck with me way past when they had to,” Copeland said. “Legally by July 1 they’re not obligated to do anything, but those guys took care of me. They did more than they needed to. That’s why I’m forever in their debt. I appreciate the type of people that I was (around) for the last two years.”
Copeland sustained injuries to his abdomen and left elbow in the incident, which occurred in front of a New York nightclub. The injuries ended his season and required a months-long rehabilitation process. Even after he became an unrestricted free agent on July 1, the Pacers allowed him to use their medical facilities.
“Everybody chipped in and helped me in my rehab process,” he said. “I couldn’t have done it by myself, so I appreciate that.”
Copeland played in 91 games over two seasons with the Pacers. He was on the court for 10 minutes on Saturday, scoring three points.