Lak­ers fined US$500,000 by NBA for tam­per­ing in­volv­ing Ge­orge

Truro Daily News - - SPORTS -

New Lak­ers gen­eral man­ager Rob Pelinka’s con­tact with Paul Ge­orge’s agent vi­o­lated the NBA’s anti-tam­per­ing rule and re­sulted in a US$500,000 fine for Los Angeles on Thurs­day.

The league said a law firm’s in­de­pen­dent in­ves­ti­ga­tion didn’t find ev­i­dence of an agree­ment or an un­der­stand­ing that the Lak­ers would sign or ac­quire Ge­orge, who was with the In­di­ana Pac­ers at the time. Ge­orge later was traded to Ok­la­homa City.

“We re­spect and ac­cept the NBA’s de­ci­sion re­gard­ing this mat­ter,” Pelinka said in a state­ment. “On be­half of the Los Angeles Lak­ers, I want to ex­press our re­gret over this un­for­tu­nate in­ci­dent to both our fans and the NBA.”

The league had warned the Lak­ers about tam­per­ing fol­low­ing com­ments by pres­i­dent of bas­ket­ball op­er­a­tions Magic John­son about Ge­orge on na­tional TV on April 20.

The league said Pelinka’s con­tact with Ge­orge’s agent “con­sti­tuted a pro­hib­ited ex­pres­sion of in­ter­est in the player while he was un­der con­tract.”

At­tor­ney Adam Streisand, who rep­re­sents the Lak­ers, called the in­ves­ti­ga­tion thor­ough and said, “We can as­sure the fans that the Lak­ers will be hyper-vig­i­lant go­ing for­ward to make sure this is never an is­sue again.”

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