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Stern statement on Arenas, Crittenton

National Basketball Association Commissioner David Stern issued the following statement today:

The NBA has conducted a thorough investigation of events relating to this matter.

It is not disputed that, following an argument on the team's flight home from a game in Phoenix, both Mr. Arenas and Mr. Crittenton brought guns to the Verizon Center locker room and - with other players and team personnel present or nearby - displayed them to one another in a continuation of their dispute. The players engaged in this conduct despite a specific rule set forth in the collective bargaining agreement between the NBA and the Players Association prohibiting players from possessing a weapon at an NBA facility, and reminders of this prohibition given annually by the NBA to players both in riting and in person.

The issue here is not about the legal ownership and possession of guns, either in one's home or elsewhere. It is about possession of guns in the NBA workplace, which will not be tolerated.

I have met separately with Mr. Arenas and with Mr. Crittenton. Both have expressed remorse for their actions and an understanding of the seriousness of their transgressions. Both have volunteered to engage in community service in order to turn the lessons they have learned into an educational message for others. I accept fully the sincerity of their expressions of regret and intent to create something positive from this incident.

Nevertheless, there is no justification for their conduct. Accordingly, I am today converting Mr. Arenas' indefinite suspension without pay to a suspension without pay for the remainder of the 2009-10 season, and am also suspending Mr. Crittenton without pay, effective immediately, for the remainder of the 2009-10 season.

By Alexa Steele  |  January 27, 2010; 5:53 PM ET
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I blame Mike Lee for his sub-par blogging. ;)

Bye Gil.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | January 27, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

I am a huge Gil fan, not a hater. I remember what it was like at Verizon Center before he got here and I enjoyed the excietment he put into the place. It was fun that people actually came to cheer for the Wiz and not the visiting team. Every home game during the playoffs had electricity in the air !!

With that being said, this is all Gil's fault. He has no one to blame but himself. There is no room for guns in the workplace, not even as a joke. And I don't care what job you have, when the boss is upset with something you have done, you don't make fun of it, call him mean and then throw it all back in his face.

I have not forgot the things Gil did for children and the community when he got here. I hope that the good that comes from this is that Gil finally grows up and learns the limits of joking. You can make a nice living and still have plenty of fun in your life. You just gotta know when to draw the line. That comes with age and maturity.

Posted by: Section102 | January 27, 2010 6:37 PM | Report abuse

The issue here is not about the legal ownership and possession of guns, either in one's home or elsewhere. It is about possession of guns in the NBA workplace, which will not be tolerated.

The NBA sucks eggs.

Posted by: hessone | January 27, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Long overdue. What is surprising is that Sterns took this long to "discover" the facts that were known, stipulated and agreed upon from the first moments this incident became known.

Now is the time for the Wizards to move forward and void both of these contracts.

Posted by: Vic1 | January 27, 2010 7:38 PM | Report abuse

Crittenton's contract expires at the end of the season, so no "voiding" is necessary. And pretty much everyone who claims to know and understand how these things actually works (legal experts, sports journalists, etc.) seems to agree that any attempt to void Arenas' contract would likely fail.

Posted by: kalo_rama | January 27, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

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