Report: Shaquille O’Neal under police investigation for incident at TNT studios

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Shaquille O’Neal has been a very public friend to law enforcement at every stop on his NBA career, but now the TNT analyst is finding himself on the wrong end of police attention.

Shaq is being investigated for a possible assault as part of an incident from March 19 at the TNT studios in Atlanta, reports WSB-TV in Atlanta after obtaining the police report.

Through his attorney Shaq has denied any wrongdoing.

Let’s get the disclaimer out there first — being investigated is very different from being charged with a crime. Someone has filed a complaint against O’Neal but the truth of what really happened is far from clear, that’s what police are trying to sort out. Here is the key parts from the WSB-TV report:

Channel 2’s Ryan Young obtained a police report detailing the incident, but so far, O’Neal has not been charged with anything…

“(The co-worker) alleged Shaquille O’Neal tackled him to the ground causing injury to his back while they were at work at Turner Studios,” said Sgt. Greg Lyon with the Atlanta Police Department….

No one ever called police that night. O’Neal has not been charged. But the police department is still doing an investigation….

O’Neal’s attorney, Dennis Roach, sent a statement about the incident saying, “This was nothing more than horseplay. No one intended for anyone to get injured.”

The victim’s attorney said that surgery was required for the injuries sustained. The intent of O’Neal in any incident very well may not matter.

At this point in any investigation it is wise to take everybody’s account with a grain of salt. Or a handful. And to question what everyone’s motivation may be.

It will be interesting to see how TNT handles this. Because the alleged incident took place on their property you can bet that the company’s lawyers will be all over this as well.

Shabazz Muhammad awkwardly mentions Collective Bargaining Agreement during halftime interview (video)

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The Timberwolves surprisingly led the Spurs by nine at halftime last night, which takes us to Shabazz Muhammad‘s mid-game interview.

Muhammad:

We’re doing a great job on defense, Wiggs, myself, everybody. It’s a tough team, especially Kawhi and the guys. So, we’re doing a really good job and everybody’s collective – Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Um. What?

To be fair, I can’t even imagine what type of nonsense I’d spew in the midst of a taxing workout or a high-pressure situation – let alone something that qualifies as both.

Unfortunately for Muhammad, Minnesota eventually fell to San Antonio, 100-93. But hopefully, he can laugh at this moment. He should, at least.

hat tip: reddit user cjsplash

Duke’s Jayson Tatum, California’s Ivan Rabb declare for NBA draft

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Wednesday a couple of forwards expected to go in the first round of June’s NBA draft said they plan on making the jump to the NBA.

As expected, Duke’s Jayson Tatum and Cal’s Ivan Rabb made their decisions official.

Duke announced Tatum’s decision.

Tatum is expected to be a top-five pick, DraftExpress.com currently has him as the No. 4 pick. The 6’8″ wing can flat-out score the rock, which is why teams are intrigued, as Rob Dauster of NBC’s College Basketball Talk told us in a recent podcast. However, teams wonder if he can create shots for others and not just himself, and if he’s going to be a good defender at the NBA level. He has the physical tools to do be a good defender, but will he put in the work game in, game out?

Rabb is a 6’10” sophomore who has a great NBA build and athleticism to spare, but at the NBA level everyone is a great athlete. Rabb doesn’t have a great perimeter game and needs to develop one and be a consistent defensive force to be a difference maker (or have a lengthy career) at the NBA level. DraftExpress.com has him going 22nd in this draft, and his stock seems to have fallen over the course of the season.

PBT Extra: What coaches are on hot seat? Alvin Gentry at front of list.

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This season, for the first time in 46 years, no NBA coach will be fired during the season (nobody is getting canned at this point).

However, once the off-season starts, there will be a few changes.

Alvin Gentry in New Orleans and Fred Hoiberg in Chicago are the names most mentioned, but there will be an unexpected firing somewhere around the league. Some GMs are on the hot seat also (Rob Hennigan in Orlando leads that parade).

I get into all of it in this latest PBT Extra.

Raptors’ Serge Ibaka, Bulls’ Robin Lopez each suspended one game for thrown punches

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It was obvious this was coming. Get in a shoving match “fight” in the NBA and you get a fine. However, actually throw punches and…

Toronto’s Serge Ibaka and Chicago’s Robin Lopez each have been suspended for one game by the NBA “for throwing punches at one another during an altercation,” the league announced. What that works out to is a $120,715 hit for Lopez and a $111,364 ding for Ibaka.

Also, Raptors assistant coach Jamaal Magloire earned a $15,000 fine shoving the Bulls Nikola Mirotic and “acting as other than a peacemaker as part of the same altercation.”

This all came out of what seemed a rather innocuous play. Ibaka and Lopez were battling for rebounding positioning, it went on for a second after the ball went through the hoop, Ibaka caught Lopez with a little chicken wing elbow in the back, Lopez spun, and, boy, that escalated quickly. Lopez’s punch missed, while Ibaka’s caught Lopez in the hair more than the body.

Both men got technicals and were ejected.