NEWARK, N.J. (AP) -- New Jersey Nets center Jayson Williams might never play in the NBA again, according to his agent.
Sal DiFazio told The New York Times in Thursday's editions that Williams might never return from the broken right leg he suffered in April 1999. Williams, 32 and a nine-year veteran, did not play last season, and the agent said Williams probably won't play in the 2000-01 season.
"The problem is that there's a structural defect that when he goes out to run and jump and play NBA basketball, the knee is going to swell and become nonusable for the next few days," DiFazio said. "You can't play ball like that. It's the residual arthritis and the residual changes in the knee."
Williams last was on the basketball court in March, practicing for three days with the Nets before breaking his left foot.
But the agent said Williams never could have played last season because of swelling and pain in his knee.
"His knee blew up to the size of a basketball," DiFazio said. "If what we saw in March is where we are, then we're done."
The Nets own the top pick in the NBA draft and could use it for a center to replace Williams, who has four years and $59.4 million remaining on his contract.