March 13, 2011
Lee Benson - 19 games, 31.9 mpg, 16.5 ppg, 14.6 rpg, 1.2 apg, 0.9 spg, 1.5 bpg, 2.3 TOpg, 49% FG, 25% 3PT, 62% FT
The always statistically dominant Benson - who averaged 34, 19 and 6 two years ago - can still fill up a statsheet. Now 37 years of age, the scoring numbers are on the way down, but even though he was released by the team for supposedly underperforming halfway through the season, the rebounding numbers were still good enough for third in the league. (Benson now plays in Argentina for Regatas Corrientes.)
June 7, 2010
Lee Benson - 7 games, 32.7 mpg, 10.3 ppg, 13.4 rpg, 1.9 apg, 3.0 fpg, 0.3 spg, 0.9 bpg, 43% FG, 50% 3PT, 75% FT
[...] Tucker was replaced by CBA staple, Lee Benson, an elder statesmen with comparatively little higher level basketball experience due to the fact that he spent almost all of his 20's in prison. Nevertheless, he was a valid NBA draft candidate in 2002 at the age of 28, after only one season of junior college; this speaks to his talent level. He's been demonstrating that talent in China lately, averaging 34.1 ppg, 18.8 rpg, 5.6 apg and 2.0 bpg in the CBA in the 2008/09 season, and playing there again this year. However, even though prison was supposed to teach him discipline, it didn't seem to; Benson and Pruitt were both released in early May for disciplinary reasons, even though they were two of the team's only 5 good players at the time, and the two best rebounders in the entire league. For more on that, read here.
May 8, 2010
Puerto Rican BSN team Gallitos de Isabella yesterday released big men Shaun Pruitt and Lee Benson for "problemas de conducta." The pair were released after Isabela's 86-76 to the Arecibo Captains on Wednesday night, a game in which Benson had 9 points and 18 rebounds, and Pruitt posted 16/16. The team moved swiftly in replacing them, signing ex-NBA centre Jared Reiner and former La Salle player Reggie Okosa (mentioned at length here).
Pruitt and Benson were first and second in the league in rebounding, at 13.5 and 13.4 rebounds per game respectively. Only two other players grab double figure rebounds per game; Michael Sweetney of Santurce (12.3 rpg) and Manuel Narvaez of Ponce (10.4rpg), so to release the duo is no small move. Teams around the world tend to be trigger happy with their imports; Benson himself was a replacement for Alando Tucker, who was previously a replacement for Devin Green. Puerto Rican teams are no different in their treatment of their American players. Nevertheless, to release arguably your two best players due to their indiscretions, regardless of the calibre of their replacements, is a highly respectable statement.
This is one part of the worldwide basketball scene that the NBA will sadly never adopt.
("Gallitos de Isabela" translates as "the Cocks of Isabella". Poor girl.)
March 7, 2010
- Lee Benson: 26.2mpg, 16.0ppg, 10.4rpg, 1.4apg, 1.6fpg, 1.2spg, 0.8bpg, 39% FG, 7% 3PT, 45% FT (may have left)
As you can tell from the sheer number of them, Shanxi have had a lot of trouble with their imports this year. They tried out about ten in the offseason, eventually settling upon three; Smith, Taylor and Michael Sweetney. The team had wanted to bring back Lee Benson, who was a star for them last year, but they refused to yield to his contract demands. Taylor has been with the team the whole season, but the rest has been a juggling act. Even though he played well, Smith was replaced after seven games by Adeleke, who got injured in his second game and was replaced for a short time by Benson, seemingly having yielded some on his contract demands. Benson was then replaced after five games by Marbury, which you probably already knew. (Sweetney never played a game for them, by the way.)
January 6, 2010
- Lee Benson
Benson was in China last year, and of all the people to put up outrageous statistics there, his might have been the best; 34.1 ppg, 18.8 rpg, 5.6 apg, 2.0 bpg. As 36 year old athletic shot chucking former prisoners go, Benson is pretty bloody good. He looked like he was going to re-sign in China this year too, but, as far as my crude Google translations can tell, Shanxi passed up on re-signing him due to his astronomical wage demands. Any man with those statistics can ask for a big payday, but Shanxi didn't appear to be happy with the way that he got them. You have to dominate the ball pretty freaking much to put up numbers like those, and to shoot 7 three pointers a game at only 30% isn't the best idea either. Still, it's great fun for us spectators.