Jeff Foster Rumors

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Jeff Foster
Jeff Foster
Position: None
Born: 01/16/77
Height: 6-11 / 2.11
Weight:242 lbs. / 109.8 kg.
Bird joined Foster for the press conference and thanked him for his 13 seasons of service. “He was somebody that came in here every day and worked hard, did the things he was supposed to do, he was a mentor to a lot of young players that came through our organization,” Bird said. “It’s been a thrill to watch him play and watch him do his things in the community. We were very fortunate to have a guy like Jeff. We hope we can have many more like him come through here because you don’t find guys of his reputation and his work ethic and his commitment every day. We’ve been very fortunate for 13 years. A lot of times we take it for granted but I know personally what he’s done here and what he’s achieved. “We had a lot of good days and a lot of bad days but overall Jeff has stayed pretty even-keeled and done his job and played hurt. It’s unfortunate it has to end this way but that’s the way this game is.”
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Forget for a moment whether Jeff Foster is ready for retirement. Consider the plight of his wife Jamie and 5-year-old twins Carter and Elle, who now will serve as the primary outlets for his interminable energy and furious competitive spirit. “You guys ready to have me beating you on the Wii all the time?” he said, looking at his wife and children. “I’m undefeated in all video games and board games with the family, so I’m going to have to tone it down a little bit. “I told the wife today that maybe after we play one night as a family, walking into the bedroom I’ll elbow her or something just to feel like I’m getting that competitive nudge back again.”
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After 13 seasons in the NBA, all with the Indiana Pacers, forward/center Jeff Foster announced his retirement Wednesday due to chronic back problems. “It’s with deep regret that I have to conclude my basketball career,” said Foster. “I’ve given my all to the Pacers and the community the last 13 years. I had hoped to be able to finish the season, but unfortunately my back problems prevented that from occurring. I want to thank the Simon family and the Pacers’ organization for 13 memorable years.” Foster played in just 11 games this season, averaging 2.3 points per game. One of the more popular players in team history for his on-court hustle, he retires in the Pacers’ top 10 career list in 11 different categories in the team’s NBA history, eight different categories in franchise history.
There was Danny Granger and Roy Hibbert, Paul George and Darren Collison, Tyler Hansbrough and George Hill. This is a talented team, and it so desperately needed one more big brother to walk into the room. The scoring, the rebounding, the defense has come with West, but Foster is no longer the lone veteran voice. The clowning is gone, replaced with a determination that breaking off plays, going one-on-one with the ball is no longer acceptable. Everything’s changing with these Pacers, and sometimes it just takes one man to walk through the door. “The way he carries himself in the locker room, the weight room, on the court, there’s such leadership,” Foster said. “He speaks up when he sees something that’s not right, but sometimes it’s just a look. He’s been a huge presence so far.”
Unrestricted free agent Jeff Foster, who was the first player to show up for workouts at the fieldhouse on Thursday, said he wants to re-sign with the Pacers because he hopes to spend his entire career with the organization. “I would love to be here,” Foster said. “I don’t think Larry and my agent have gotten to the point to talk about that. ….. This is my home. I’m rooted here. We’ll see what happens.”
Foster keeps 28 percent of his savings in cash. He says he normally has 5 percent to 10 percent of his portfolio in cash, “but I’m scared of the market now, though I think at some point there’s going to be an opportunity to invest and get a great return.” Foster and many other players turned down the NBA’s offer to spread out players’ salaries over the course of the lockout. “It’s better to have that money earn interest for you,” Raetz says, adding that the NBA’s offer makes more sense for younger players who haven’t saved much.
Foster now considers himself fortunate for having learned an early lesson. By the time he signed his second deal with the Pacers in 2002—six years for $30 million—he had become a much more conservative investor. Today, while he still actively buys and sells stocks, only 13 percent of his portfolio is invested in the stock market. Although Foster and his advisers declined to provide the exact amount of his savings, they did provide a breakdown, by percentage, of his portfolio. The biggest portion—33 percent—is in fixed income, largely municipal bonds. Eleven percent is invested in managed real estate—apartment buildings and student housing that provide Foster with monthly income and tax breaks without the headache of personally overseeing properties and tenants. Eight percent is allotted to private equity; 7 percent is in private investments that aren’t supervised by True Capital Management.
Nonetheless, Foster has played in the NBA for 12 years and earned more than $47 million, and he’s done something extraordinary: He’s saved about three-quarters of his take- home pay. “Jeff’s an example of a pro athlete who’s done it right,” says Doug Raetz, co-founder of True Capital Management, a San Francisco-based wealth management firm that represents Foster and about 150 professional basketball, football, and baseball players. Foster, who is six-feet-eleven, entered the league with advantages that many of his fellow professional athletes lack. He grew up in an upper-middle-class home—his mother worked as a high school principal in San Antonio, while his father ran a property management company. When he was in 11th grade—the same age as LeBron James when he had his first Sports Illustrated cover—Foster was playing on the junior varsity squad and thinking about becoming a journalist. That focus on another career may ultimately have helped him financially. “In our culture, a top athlete often stops being a student in the seventh grade and the focus is on sports,” says Peter Dunn, a financial adviser who has worked with several Indianapolis Colts players.
Early in his National Basketball Assn. career, Jeff Foster, a center for the Indiana Pacers, became acquainted with a man he came to think of as a friend. The man followed the team on road trips and called Foster’s hotel room to invite him for meals. Then one day the man presented Foster with a business opportunity: For just $2 million, the basketball player could be part of a surefire venture to open a bed and breakfast in the verdant Pennsylvania hills. When Foster explained, truthfully, that he didn’t have that kind of money— the Pacers paid him just over $4 million for the first four years of his career, about half of which was gobbled up by taxes, escrow payments, and his agent’s fee—his “friend” was undaunted. He asked Foster to introduce him to an older teammate who had just signed a much more lucrative contract. Foster declined. “And of course,” Foster says, “I never spoke to him again.”
Foster keeps 28 percent of his savings in cash. He says he normally has 5 percent to 10 percent of his portfolio in cash, “but I’m scared of the market now, though I think at some point there’s going to be an opportunity to invest and get a great return.” Foster and many other players turned down the NBA’s offer to spread out players’ salaries over the course of the lockout. “It’s better to have that money earn interest for you,” Raetz says, adding that the NBA’s offer makes more sense for younger players who haven’t saved much.
He enrolled in the first school that offered him an athletic scholarship, Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University-San Marcos). “My goal was to get a free education,” he says. “I never thought I’d play in the NBA.” Yet he had a strong college career, and the Golden State Warriors selected him with the 21st pick of the 1999 draft, before trading him to the Pacers. His rookie deal of $4.34 million over four years was much less lucrative than those of NBA superstars, but compared with the average American, Foster was rich. “As I learned in my finance classes in college, when you’re in your 20s you invest heavily in the market, and as you get older, you become a lot less aggressive,” says Foster. His initial forays into investing coincided with the peak of the Internet bubble. “I was extremely aggressive investing early on. I put a lot of money into an Internet fund. I watched it go up about 20 percent in the first couple of months, but then it just vanished.”