With only a handful of games total left on the regular season schedule, the NBA has suspended Utah Jazz wing Thabo Sefolosha and Dallas Mavericks center Nerlens Noel five games for violating the league’s anti-drug policy.
The NBA announced the two suspensions earlier this morning.
The NBA announced today that Nerlens Noel of the Dallas Mavericks and Thabo Sefolosha of the Utah Jazz have each been suspended without pay for five games for violating the terms of the NBA/NBPA Anti-Drug Program.
Noel’s suspension will begin with tonight’s game between the Dallas Mavericks and the Portland Trail Blazers. Sefolosha’s suspension will begin with the next NBA regular season or playoff game for which he is eligible and physically able to play.
With the current anti-drug policy in place, players face a five-game suspension after testing positive for marijuana for the third time. While a first infraction results in taking a class and the second comes with a hefty fine, the third positive test is the one that results in a suspension.
The Mavericks only have exactly five games left on their schedule so this suspension will effectively put an end to Nerlens Noel’s second and incredibly disappointing year with the Mavs. This likely also means we’ve seen the last of Noel in Dallas as the once promising prospect is set to hit the unrestricted free agent market this coming summer.
As for Thabo Sefolosha, the veteran will face his five-game suspension once he makes his return to the court. Sefolosha, 33, elected to undergo season-ending knee surgery in January.
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