Larry Sanders eyes NBA return: 'I can definitely contribute'
Sam Forencich / National Basketball Association / Getty

Free-agent center Larry Sanders says he's open to making a comeback to the NBA.

Sanders last appeared in the league during a brief stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017.

"I think with things shifting a bit, me still young, I feel like I'm in a prime stage, I can definitely contribute," the 31-year-old told TMZ Sports.

The Milwaukee Bucks selected Sanders in the first round of the 2010 draft, and he showed promise as a high-end defensive stopper. Sanders inked a four-year, $44-million extension after putting up career highs of 9.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks per game in 2012-13.

However, Sanders would play only 50 more games over two seasons with Milwaukee, in part due to injuries and suspensions for violating the league's drug policies. During the 2014-15 season, Sanders entered a hospital program to treat anxiety and depression, leading to an agreement with the Bucks to a contract buyout in February 2015.

Sanders' most recent on-court experience was a season with the 3 Headed Monsters of the BIG3 in 2019. He averaged 4.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks per game.

He said he still has something to offer NBA teams, both on and off the court. However, Sanders is ineligible to sign with a team ahead of the NBA's tentative return in Orlando next month since he hasn't appeared in an NBA or a G League game or NBA training camp during the last two seasons.

"I would just love to contribute to a team and help them win and give my knowledge, give my defensive presence, and just being able to play basketball," Sanders said. "And then cope with life the way I cope with that. That's ideal for me. That sounds like heaven."

Larry Sanders eyes NBA return: 'I can definitely contribute'
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