Publish date:

Larry Sanders suspended minimum of 10 games for drug violation


Milwaukee Bucks center Larry Sanders has been suspended without pay at least 10 games after violating the NBA/NBPA Anti-Drug Program, the league announced in a news release.

The suspension will begin when Milwaukee hosts the Toronto Raptors on Monday and remain in place until "he is in full compliance with his treatment program."

Sanders has not played since Dec. 23. During that span, the Bucks have gone 7-4. They currently sit in fifth place in the Eastern Conference at 21-19.

A rumor surfaced that Sanders told team officials he doesn't want to play anymore. He rejoined the team for its Jan. 6 loss to the Phoenix Suns and watched from the bench in street clothes.

After the game, he addressed his absence. From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

SI Recommends

"Someone also told me that. I haven't seen that yet," Sanders said. "I figured with my absence that something was going to come out sooner than later. That's not true. But what is true I would say is that I'm in the process of working things out now internally to do what's best for my physique and my physical health going forward.

"There's a lot of evaluating going on. There's a lot of inside talk just to put myself in the best place for my health right now."

GOLLIVER: Bucks' Larry Sanders tries to find footing

Sanders was suspended five games in April 2014 for violating the league's anti-drug program.

Over 27 games this season, Sanders has averaged 7.3 points, 6.1 rebounds and 1.4 blocks. He signed a four-year, $44 million contract extension in 2013.

• MAHONEY: John Wall strengthens stardom with defense