View Full Version : Webber to be suspended at least 6 games for his lies

02-15-2004, 06:07 PM
Webber to be suspended for at least 6 games

Sacramento Bee
Webber penalty at least 6 games

Upon being activated, the Kings forward will be suspended for lying to a federal grand jury.
By Scott Howard-Cooper -- Bee Staff Writer
Published 2:15 a.m. PST Sunday, February 15, 2004

LOS ANGELES - Chris Webber will be suspended at least six games by the NBA for lying to a federal grand jury, it was learned Saturday, a strong penalty that comes as a response to what one league official called "horrendous" actions by the Kings forward.
The exact length of the discipline is not known, but an announcement could be made within days, as soon as Webber is activated after spending the first 50 games on the injured list while recovering from knee surgery.

The Kings are believed to have already been informed of the decision.
NBA executives declined comment.

The league has previously said it won't even discuss the process for an unusual suspension - Webber being penalized for lying and the league then having to put him and the Kings on the honor system to decide when he is healthy - until its ruling has been made public.

That announcement is likely to come soon, with the possibility that Webber will practice Monday as the Pacific Division leaders reconvene after the All-Star break. Barring any unexpected setbacks from that workout, he could be activated before the Kings play the Boston Celtics at Arco Arena on Tuesday night, at which point the suspension will begin. If his return is delayed, the clock starting on the suspension will be as well.

"I talked to Geoff (Petrie, president of basketball operations) early this week about all the (trade) rumors about Doug Christie, and he said they were just rumors," co-owner Joe Maloof said. "We also talked about when 'Webb' would be activated. He said that was pretty much after the All-Star break. I haven't heard anything about the length of the suspension, and certainly of it being more than five games."

Under the scenario that Webber is activated Tuesday and the suspension is six games, the minimum according to a source who spoke on condition of anonymity, he would be out until Feb. 27 against Utah. That would cost him, among others, Feb. 19 at Minnesota and Feb. 26 against the Lakers at Staples Center.

Webber pleaded guilty to one count of criminal contempt of court in July. The plea bargain came one day before he was scheduled to go on trial in U.S. District Court in Detroit in a four-count indictment that alleged he lied to a grand jury about accepting money, clothing and jewelry from a University of Michigan booster. Webber had maintained his innocence until that point, before finally admitting otherwise, and was given community service and a deferred sentence.

SacBee: Webber to be suspended 6 games for lying to grand jury (http://www.sacbee.com/content/sports/basketball/kings/story/8272991p-9203679c.html)

02-15-2004, 06:43 PM
The guy is as sleazy as the owners. Sacramento will make a big dent in the playoffs with or without him

The thing that gets me is that his punishment for smugly lying to a grand jury is sitting out a few games? He still earns millions of dollars sitting on the bench for more than half a season and when he comes back, his punishment is to sit out a few games? If anything it's a punishment aimed more at the Kings than at Webber. If I lied to a grand jury I would face a little more punishment than that.

02-15-2004, 07:01 PM
That was a dumb comment. He lied to a grand jury to protect his family but thats not the point. The point is that he is getting a bigger suspension than other players like jason richardson that was convicted for domestic violence. Its okay though because he deserves a suspension, just not 6 games. 3-4 games sounds more reasonable. If kobe gets convicted or pleads guilty for a lesser charge (if he doesn't go to jail), he should be banned from the NBA.

02-15-2004, 07:13 PM
The point is that he is getting a bigger suspension than other players like jason richardson that was convicted for domestic violence.

I don't remember too much about his situation, but wasn't his conviction a misdemeanor charge? I think the NBA does the suspensions on the seriousness of the crime.

02-15-2004, 07:32 PM
That was a dumb comment

Thanks. I just always thought that lying to a grand jury was a big deal whether you have good intentions or not.

02-15-2004, 07:36 PM
Right you are, TheBaron. And, I'm betting that Webber would have gotten a lot worse in court if the main witness hadn't died. (Conveniently forgotten by Peja_owns)

Poindexter Einstein
02-15-2004, 07:37 PM
BARON ...He is getting popped pretty hard with this suspension. And ironically, it ends being a penalty that fits the crime.

He took about $250,000 of under the table money from a booster. And lied about it in court.

Penalty is for the lying in court - and his 6 game suspension HAS A FINANCIAL PENALTY of over $1,150,000. Its not like a paid vacation. Thats a pretty strong slap upside the head by the NBA. (And keep in mind that he is less marketable from a commercial endorsement standpoint now also - "convicted in court" and "suspended by the league" truly hurts the image in the corporate jungle.)

02-15-2004, 08:02 PM
I dont think that we have to look at the original amount of money on this since it isnt about the initial money, its about lying to a grand jury. President Clinton wasn't empeached because he had an extra-marital affair; he was empeached because he lied about it. I also don't see how such a poorly televised story could make such a big deal in endorsements. He's not exactly a TV personality now and his shoe contract isnt in danger.

Also, what Webber did originally was on par with some of the controversies surrounding University of Colorado recruiting and Maurice Clarett. What Webber did originally very well could have gotten him barred from playing in the NBA and could have disqualified him from being drafted (believe it or not $15,000 in gifts can make a player inelligible for the draft- think LeBron James and his jerseys.) He then lied in court about it.

6 games off and a million dollars of his 7year, 123 million dollar contract ($123,000,000) is not a big deal

the paperwork (http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/cwebbertest1.html)

02-15-2004, 10:02 PM
Actually I donīt think the NBA should be in a position to punish players for their off-NBA behaviour.

Thatīs in the power of the courts, not of any matter for the NBA.

I can see teams suspending players for DUI and violation of the drug stuff, since they are their employees and it may affect their on-court appearence, but domestic charges and other legal stuff should be out of any discussion here.

The Webber-incident might differ because it is related to his professional sports carreer, but actually I donīt get why players should take double punishment.

02-15-2004, 10:47 PM
Craig Segar reported that Webber will be suspended up to 8 games and that it suggests the supension goes beyond lying to the grand jury.

The Kings plan to activate Webber after practice tomorrow so he can start serving the supsension.

Poindexter Einstein
02-15-2004, 10:48 PM
Baron ... "believe it or not $15,000 in gifts can make a player inelligible for the draft"

Huh? Since when? I dont think that is even remotely true, sorry. I am open to more info, if you know something I dont.

02-16-2004, 12:29 AM
Originally posted by: OutletPass
Right you are, TheBaron. And, I'm betting that Webber would have gotten a lot worse in court if the main witness hadn't died. (Conveniently forgotten by Peja_owns)

You think I purposely left that out? That has nothing to do with it. Am I disagreeing that he should not be suspended? No. I am just pointing out that his suspension seems a bit steep for the crime compared to other crimes that have been convicted by nba players.

02-16-2004, 01:07 AM
Peja....If you're convicted of a felony...and get jail time....the NBA doesn't have to do a thing. You're gone. IF you get a low grade felony or a misdemeanor and probation.....then that's another story.

Since the league has a drug and alcohol policy, they step in...But I don't really know if they should step into OTHER CASES...

UNLESS it involves the game of basketball...And CWebb's crime does involve the game of basketball.

Let's just wait and see what else the league says...the latest report said it involved MORE than his lies about receiving money to play ball....

(But, in all honesty, if Dirk, or Steve, or Fin would have done that...you wouldn't find any of us defending him here. We're not that simple.)

Shaq Attack2
02-16-2004, 01:44 AM
He lied to a grand jury to protect his family...


02-16-2004, 01:56 AM
He'll be activated tomorrow and his suspension is 8 games long. On TNT when talking about B.Miller's Injury....By the way wouldnt doesnt that scare you a little bit, Brad wasnt playing that hard yet he got hurt. Dirks gonna put his @$$ on the line in the Olympics.


02-16-2004, 11:20 AM
I don't see why the King's are getting upset about this..A week ago they were worried about how they were going to get him back in the lineup..

So, in a way the NBA did them a favor...

I'm surprised the court system didn't offer any jail time for perjury...i/expressions/face-icon-small-shocked.gif (I guess they would rather have his money)

I guess if this is the case, and professional atheletes can break the law, and only suffer punishment from the NBA..

Then I guess if Kobe is convicted or pleads guilty..Then he can expect around a 1 season exemption...i/expressions/face-icon-small-disgusted.gif

I say let players face criminal charges as everyday citizens..(do the crime; do the time)

02-16-2004, 01:53 PM
Report: Kings F Webber faces eight-game suspension

February 16, 2004

SACRAMENTO, California (Ticker) - Sacramento Kings forward Chris Webber apparently will face a stiff penalty once he is activated from the injured list.

The Sacramento Bee reported Monday that the NBA will suspend Webber for eight games without pay for lying to a federal grand jury and for violating the league's substance abuse policy.

Webber averaged 23.0 points, 10.5 rebounds and 5.4 assists for the Kings last season before suffering a left knee injury in the Western Conference semifinals against the Dallas Mavericks.

He had surgery in the offseason and has missed all 50 games this season. But Webber has been practicing with Sacramento for the past few weeks and Kings president Geoff Petrie told the Sacramento Bee that the return of Webber is "getting close."

Webber pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal contempt on July 14 as part of a plea bargain. He had been charged with lying to a grand jury about his contact with Ed Martin, a former basketball booster at the University of Michigan.

Webber's sentence was deferred for two years in September and he was ordered to perform community service.

The 30-year-old Webber played two seasons at Michigan before he was the first pick of the 1993 NBA draft.

Even without Webber, the Kings own the NBA's best record (37-13).

02-16-2004, 02:09 PM
Okay if thats true, then the length of his suspension will make sense. But in order to get suspended for substance abuse, he has to be tested positive AND been tested positive for the same substance 3 times.

02-16-2004, 02:25 PM
I love how Peja tries to find loopholes. Lying to a grand jury is lying to a gand jury. period. Violating drug policy is violating drug policy. It's true that Webber's contract cannot be tampered with because of one drug test but a single infraction is enough to warrant a suspension, especially if the drug is an illegal performance-enhancer.

The guy did illegal things, then lied about it to a grand jury and while getting prepared to be activated, took illegal drugs. The guy is as classy as they come, Ill tell you.

02-16-2004, 02:30 PM
Regardless of the fact that I think Webber and whatever player that have underground business related to basketball -or like Rose in baseball- must be banned forever, I'm still wondering about Lebron's case, in which the NBA didn't have anything to do, but that it was also eased and forgotten.

How many cases do we have out there? I'm still remember Sosa, the corked bat and the ludicrous "punishment".

I mean, why money has to rule the morality of our sports? Because Webber and James -just mentioning a simple sample- mean legal(?)business for the leagues.

But they are wrong, the very Kings has showed us that Sports don't need that people.

02-16-2004, 02:40 PM
Originally posted by: TheBaron
I love how Peja tries to find loopholes. Lying to a grand jury is lying to a gand jury. period. Violating drug policy is violating drug policy. It's true that Webber's contract cannot be tampered with because of one drug test but a single infraction is enough to warrant a suspension, especially if the drug is an illegal performance-enhancer.

The guy did illegal things, then lied about it to a grand jury and while getting prepared to be activated, took illegal drugs. The guy is as classy as they come, Ill tell you.

Loppholes? What loopholes? I call it the way I see it. The fact is that these comments aren't even official and as of now are just rumors. Am I saying that webber didn't do anything???? No. Please reply and try to put me down again. You can start with my misspellings.

02-16-2004, 02:43 PM
wait a second. I never put you down and I never commented on your misspellings. What are you talking about?

I would prefer that you not try and stir up a fight. This site is already on red alert for all of that. Read my entry and tell me where I attacked you the first time and I will apologize

02-16-2004, 04:55 PM
I think Kings' fans (myself included) are just feeling kicked in the gut at the moment...it's bad enough Miller sprained his ankle at the All Star game, now CWebb's suspension is twice as long as the suspension for a guy that slapped his girlfriend around, and for what? Criminal contempt? Lying about a few things to the grand jury is bad, but is it more serious than domestic violence? How do you judge which is the worse offense?

Not to mention that the drug tie-in just surfaced yesterday, but there aren't really any clear reports on whether or not such speculation is true.

And, I'd appreciate it if all wouldn't act as if CWebb would have been convicted had Martin not died...as if Martin was some saint who had nothing to gain from smearing the names of former athletes at the University of Michigan or elsewhere, and as if he had any corroborative evidence of his claims of the amount of money he gave to those players.

02-16-2004, 05:11 PM
I definitely have respect for the Kings and I feel horrible about being involved in the accident that put Webber out, and I have a lot of empathy for the Kings after losing Miller. It's a tough situation.

I also think that the NBA has set a dangerous precedent by punishing people. I ultimately think it is correct that the NBA do so but the commissioner has yet to find consistency. The problem ultimately is that

1) the early punishments were so mild that now there is no consistency between suspensions like G. Robinson's 3 days for bloodying his girlfriend, Duncan's one day suspension for touching an official and Webber's 8 days for drug use and lying to a grand jury. I would like to see worse punishments for everyone, especially those that are involved in violent crime.

2) There really isnt a set of criteria now for determining what violation deserves what punishment and what crime is worse. Are basketball-related vioations worse than domestic ones? Should moral character for NBA players be more important than legal responsibility? It is a difficult standard to set because it is unclear.

3) We have to ask ourselves whether the NBA should be responsible for punishing players. On the one hand Chris Webber's main offense is against the US government and against the NCAA, and not the NBA and his actions happened before he was an NBA player, but on the other hand Chris Webber is an NBA employee who very visually represents the company (which is what the NBA is). It seems more logical to me that the NBA should fire employees rather than punish them publically. I would prefer the NBA asked itself, "do we really want this employee publically representing us?" and the answer to Robinson would be "no". The ability to play is a good thing but it should not be the sole criterion for determining if a player remains an employee. At my job I have to represent the company well, work hard, come to work on time (Francis), and have a good attitude.

4) the NBA needs to investigate new ways of punishment that do not hurt innocent parties. Neither Philadelphia nor Sacramento were guilty of the crimes. It was Webber and Robinson that violated the rules so they should be punished and not the team. With Miller now hurt, Sacramento is being punished for what Webber did. If players are fired/suspended the team should get compensation.

Poindexter Einstein
02-16-2004, 05:52 PM
CHIWAS ..."I'm still wondering about Lebron's case, in which the NBA didn't have anything to do, but that it was also eased and forgotten."

What exactly are you asserting that Lebron did that was ILLEGAL? I dont know how his name is at all relevant here.

02-16-2004, 05:55 PM
pointdexter- have you completely forgetting jersey-gate? They guy could have missed the draft because of his supposed endorsements that would have made him professional. The 15grand Webber got could have been considered the same thing.

Sure LeBron didnt break the law by accepting the jerseys but part of what Webber did was violating the rules of the NBA/NCAA which is where the analogy is.

Poindexter Einstein
02-16-2004, 06:08 PM
BARON ... LeBron did nothing that jeopardized his NBA eligibility, nor could he have by accepting endorsements. LeBron could have been ruled ineligible for the NCAA in the most extreme case, but even that was a major stretch (and, as we all saw, the whole thing was way over-blown). But not the NBA. And LeBron did nothing that was ILLEGAL. Not by a long shot.

Yes Webber broke NCAA rules, but his crime was what he did in lying to a court. I suspect he also has liability from a tax fraud angle too, regarding undeclared income, but that issue has never been made public. However, "breaking rules" is not a crime, and it is overly sanctimonious to try to turn these rule violations (which have their own penalty, and one that needs to be applied) into some major crime, IMO.

02-16-2004, 06:21 PM
I never said that LeBron did anything illegal. I would advise a re-read of what I said.

I never said that we should turn Webber's violations into a crime either. Where are you getting this stuff? He lied which was destruction of justice and that is a crime. He did a substance which was probably illegal which violates the NBA rules and probably the law as well. The other stuff is either a violation of NCAA or NBA rules.

Part of the original case on Webber was that he had a part in gambling on his team (although through Martin). That is against NBA and NCAA and could be against the law.

02-16-2004, 06:44 PM
TheBaron, Pointdexter is correct here (as usual i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif ).

You must be confusing HS/NCAA eligibility with NBA Draft eligibility. LeBron and CWebb were jeopardizing their amateur status, nothing to do with the draft. The big fuss about LeBron last spring was that he became ineligible to play in his school's HS games (though later reinstated), not that he was ineligible for the draft.

According to the CBA, Article X, Section 5 (a), "A person residing within the United States whose high school class has graduated shall become eligible to be selected in an NBA Draft if he renounces his intercollegiate basketball eligibility by written notice to the NBA at least forty-five (45) days prior to such Draft." There are some additional provisions for players signing abroad and foreign players, but there are no provisions that would make one ineligible, save age.

02-16-2004, 06:46 PM
Webber should be suspended for much longer than this.

02-16-2004, 09:21 PM
Don't forget the expensive car (or cars?) that Lebron bought without any economic possibility to do so.

I tried to mean that if the player -whichever- is prone to brake laws -or rules as Lebron- sports needn't them.

02-16-2004, 10:31 PM
That whole "fully personalized Hummer H2" deal was a little weird but there wasnt anything illegal or underhanded about it. His poor mother who didn't even earn 40k in a year decided to take out a loan for 40k to buy him the car. It's like a homeless guy asking for a loan to buy a house and having a winning lottery card as collateral- she just didnt have the money [i]yet

Poindexter Einstein
02-16-2004, 11:10 PM
BARON..."I never said that LeBron did anything illegal. I would advise a re-read of what I said. "

Yep you did. I would advise YOU make a re-read of what you said IN CONTEXT.

You replied to a statement I made TO SOMEONE ELSE, in which I questioned using the concept of "illegal" in relation to LeBrons actions. You responded to me by name, in the very next post, and your first words "have you forgotten" clearly carry the inference that you are disputing my point - which would mean that what you are presenting is something that LeBron did that IS ILLEGAL (since my point was that he had done nothing illegal). Maybe you didnt mean it that way, but there was no other way to take it in that context, and you are wrong to call me out on seeing "LeBron did illegal things" as your obvious point.

02-16-2004, 11:24 PM
Sure LeBron didnt break the law by accepting the jerseys

? I cant figure out the context where you could take that as meaning the opposite and that is the only place where I talked about LeBron. My response was not to your statement refuting Chiwas, it was to the quote in which you said that LeBron hadnt done anything wrong. Wrong? yes, but I clearly stated that LeBron was NOT guilty of doing anything illegal.

Poindexter Einstein
02-16-2004, 11:41 PM
BARON...what I was saying before you addressed me was "nothing by Lebron was illegal" ... if you jump up to dispute my point, it is reasonable to figure that you are saying things ARE illegal. Nevertheless, my main point in the next post to you was about the irrelevance to his NBA draft status of all of Lebrons deeds, and at the end I was merely reasserting that in any event LeBron didnt do ILLEGAL activities - which is very different from Webber, who has been convicted for his deeds.

If you want to readdress MY point, now that all the he-said she-said has been conjugated, I will state it again ...

I say LeBron is irrelevant here to this discussion. Webber was punished for being convicted in a court for serious illegal activities. There is nothing whatsoever in Lebron's past of such a nature.