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NBA's longest non-drug related suspensions

BY JOHN ROHDE, Staff Writer, jrohde@opubco.com Published: April 23, 2012
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Ron Artest, Indiana Pacers (86 games; 73 regular season and 13 postseason): The chief culprit in the Malice at the Palace, a 2004 brawl between the Pacers and Pistons that led to nine players being suspended for a total of 146 games. Artest's foul on Detroit's Ben Wallace escalated into a brawl between players and fans.


Latrell Sprewell, Golden State Warriors (68 games): Sprewell didn't like coach P.J. Carlesimo's criticism during a practice in 1997, so he threatened to kill his coach and choked him. The Warriors voided the remainder of his contract. On appeal, Sprewell had the voiding overturned and the suspension was reduced to 68 games.

Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton, Washington Wizards (55 games for Arenas; 38 for Crittenton): These teammates were suspended for the remainder of the 2009-10 season after pleading guilty to having weapons in the team's locker room. Arenas already had served a previous suspension and missed 12 games.

Stephen Jackson, Indiana Pacers (30 games): Jackson was among the nine players to be suspended for the Palace brawl. He received a 30-game suspension for following Artest into the stands and throwing punches at fans. Although the players' union appealed, a federal arbitrator upheld Jackson's full suspension.

Kermit Washington, Los Angeles Lakers (26 games): One of the NBA's darkest moments came in 1973 when Washington's round-house right hand crushed the face and skull of Rudy Tomjanovich and nearly killed him. Washington was suspended for 60 days (26 games), the league's longest suspension at that time.

Jermaine O'Neal, Indiana Pacers (15 games; reduced on appeal from 25 games): O'Neal initially was suspended indefinitely following the Palace brawl. Commissioner David Stern banned O'Neal for 25 games. The players' union claimed Stern had "exceeded his authority" and the ban was reduced to 15 games.

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