Ed Odeven Reporting

This feature story was filed before the last season of former NBA forward David Benoit’s playing career, when he suited up for the Saitama Broncos, and appeared in The Japan Times on Nov. 3, 2006.

Benoit happy to impart wisdom from NBA days to Broncos

By Ed Odeven
TOKOROZAWA, Saitama Pref. — He played in arenas with 20,000 people rooting against him and his teammates.

He stayed in big cities, played a game, hopped on a plane and traveled to another big city for the next one.

He lived the life of luxury, fulfilling a childhood dream by playing in the NBA.

David Benoit is still a basketball player.

But now, thousands of kilometers away, his adoring fans call him Ben-chan.

This term of endearment goes a long way in explaining how the Saitama Broncos’ rowdy supporters have embraced the 38-year-old Benoit and the bj-league.

After a recent evening practice…

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