<
>

Green undergoes surgery on left knee

PHILADELPHIA -- Philadelphia 76ers restricted free agent Willie Green will miss six to nine months after undergoing successful surgery on his left knee Tuesday.

The 6-foot-2 guard was scheduled to sign a $20 million, six-year contract, but the restricted free agent injured his knee in a pickup game. While contract terms were reached, the deal was never signed.

"I have been in contact with Willie's agent and we are
exploring options with Willie," team president Billy King said.
"There will be no immediate answer at this time."

Agent Noah Croom said he was unsure when he'll talk about the
contract with King.

"I'm sure that he has some concerns and issues. We'll figure it
out," Croom said. "There's no need to get into specifics. We'll
have to figure out what our next step is."

Green thrived as a reserve last year when Allen Iverson was
injured, including a 32-point game against Washington in January.

In two seasons with the 76ers, Green averaged 7.3 points and 1.4
assists. He was drafted in the second round in 2003 by Seattle and
acquired by Philadelphia in a draft-night trade.

Croom said Green was optimistic he would return sometime this
season and was ready to start his rehab.

"The doctors seemed to think he should be cleared medically
within six months, then it's just a matter of when he can play,"
he said.