The Phoenix Suns on Thursday drafted Dragan Bender fourth overall in the NBA Draft. Dragan is the brother of Ivan Bender, a forward on the Maryland basketball team.
This is Dragan’s night, which means it’s a big night for Ivan, too. And the Maryland rising redshirt sophomore celebrated his brother’s selection with the same fervor in which he might celebrate a big Maryland basket.
Ivan has played for the last two seasons on Maryland’s team, mostly as a depth option off the bench who’s played in blowouts against lower-echelon opponents. The family hails from Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Dragan spent last year playing professionally in Israel. Geographically, it’s been a long road here, so this is cool to see for the Benders.
Congratulations to Dragan for being drafted. Just as importantly, thanks to the Bender family on achieving something very cool and then enjoying a world-class hug for the consumption of Maryland-oriented viewers everywhere.