There was once a time in which Elton Brand was one of the best big men in the NBA. Back in the early-mid 2000s, Brand was a 20 and 10 machine. He made multiple All-Star teams and even helped the Los Angeles Clippers to what was then a rare playoff appearance in 2005-06.
But after suffering an a ruptured achilles tendon in 2007, Brand has never quite been the same. He’s still been a solid player for multiple teams, but he’s never again reached the All-Star level he was at beforehand.
Last season he joined the Atlanta Hawks and was thrust into a bigger role after Al Horford went down for the season. He didn’t set the league on fire or anything, but he was very solid.
Spurred on by his ability to still play last season, Brand, who is now a free agent, will be returning to the NBA for a 16th season.
“My body feels good,” the 34-year-old Brand said. “I’m already training for next season.”
Brand said he started his preparations for another season with Hawks strength and conditioning coach Jeff Watkinson and is currently working out in Pennsylvania in preparation for another year. The NBA free agency period begins July 1 and players can sign contracts starting on July 10.
Wherever he ends up playing, it will be in a reserve role off the bench. Based on his performance last season, a playoff team looking to sure up their front line may be wise to give Brand a shot.