HoopsHype Jeff Foster rumors

November 30, 2011 Updates
November 19, 2011 Updates

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.” BusinessWeek.com

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. BusinessWeek.com

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. BusinessWeek.com

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. BusinessWeek.com

October 21, 2011 Updates

“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. Indianapolis Business Journal

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.” Indianapolis Business Journal

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. Indianapolis Business Journal

July 21, 2011 Updates

Williams reportedly signed a $5 million contract with his Turkish team. He's scheduled to make $16.4 million with the Nets next season. "You don't jump at just any opportunity to go," Jones said. "The money has to be right and it has to be the right situation. That's why you have to think everything through first before going." Pacers T.J. Ford, Mike Dunleavy, Jeff Foster and Darren Collison said they are not looking to play outside of the United States. "That hasn't even crossed my mind," Collison said. "I want to see how things play out. I just want to stay positive as much as I can." Indianapolis Star

May 4, 2011 Updates

Veteran Jeff Foster wants to return for his 13th season in the league but doesn't want to have to wait an extended period of time before playing. He hopes the NBA is paying attention to what's going on with the NFL's lockout. "You just hope the powers that be and the people who are making the decisions on both fronts see what's going on with the NFL and decide we don't want to do that," Foster said. "We don't want to go down that road. Hopefully there's not a lockout, and if there is, hopefully it's not long and we can come to some sort of agreement that benefits both parties." Indianapolis Star

April 26, 2011 Updates

Foster's ready. "It'd be kind of cool if I got booed," Foster said, laughing. "If they need a villain, it looks like I'm their guy. The Bulls have great fans. It should be a great game." Foster fouled Rose hard on one of his countless drives to the basket during Game 1. Rose had words for Foster after the play. Foster had personal fouls on Rose and Bulls forward Luol Deng during Game 3 upgraded to flagrant-one fouls after a league review. "He's not taking cheap shots," Pacers interim coach Frank Vogel said. "There are no plays out there where he's trying to hurt anybody. He's just playing hard-nose, physical, good basketball." Indianapolis Star

April 23, 2011 Updates

The NBA upgraded two hits Indiana Pacers center Jeff Foster leveled against the Chicago Bulls during Game 3 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinals series on Thursday, making them both flagrant 1 fouls. Foster will not be suspended for Game 4 on Saturday. A flagrant 1 is considered less severe than a flagrant 2 foul, which calls for an automatic ejection from the game. Two flagrant 1 fouls in a game also call for an ejection. "Whatever they want to do," Foster said with a shrug as he walked to the locker room Friday afternoon before the ruling. He was unaware the league was reviewing the fouls. ESPN.com

Neither play resulted in a flagrant call, which would saddle Foster with points that could lead to a suspension. “Let the league make those decisions,’’ Thibodeau said. “We’re just getting ready for the next game.’’ Chicago Sun-Times

Foster, who won't be suspended for today's Game 4, fouled Bulls forward Luol Deng and guard Derrick Rose on drives to the basket in the second half. Rose took exception to Foster's foul because it was the second time in the series he has taken a hard shot from the Pacers' veteran big man. "I thought they were good, clean playoff fouls," Pacers interim coach Frank Vogel said. "That's all we talk about with our guys, is that we want to protect our basket. We don't want flagrants. We're trying to protect our basket and protect it in a physical manner." Indianapolis Star

April 22, 2011 Updates
February 24, 2011 Updates
February 16, 2011 Updates

Sources still expect Indiana to trade at least one of its expiring contracts -- Jeff Foster, Mike Dunleavy or T.J. Ford -- to a contender. CBSSports.com

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