On Darius Miles, PEDs in the NBA and Pot

This Darius Miles story has so much to offer the world. First, there's the way he could destroy the Blazers' well-laid salary cap future. ↵
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↵Now, the mystery of this 10-game suspension he has to serve upon his (hypothetical) return. True Hoop surmised that the league must have leaked it, and wondered exactly what it was for; Tom Ziller asked why, if some signs pointed to PEDs, the league would've publicized it: ↵
↵⇥The league has never publicly announced a PED suspension. All the recent NBA drug suspensions have been of the marijuana and DUI variety, save Chris Andersen's infamous two-year ban due to alleged use of hard recreational narcotics. Since Miles has not played in two years, is the league under any obligation to publicize the failed drug test ... It's certainly in the NBA's interest to keep it hushed so long as it does not need to be known; the steroid issue is one of few in which the NBA hasn't taken a public-eye beating, in comparison with the other major leagues. ↵
↵Here's the thing: The league has publicly announced a PED suspension. When Lindsey Hunter tested positive last season, we knew the specific substance within a matter of hours. In fact, it turns out that league policy mandates announcing all the gory details about PED suspensions. ↵
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↵This might seem counter-productive, but think here: Miles is exactly the kind of player already assumed by many to be on the pot, if not something worse. Recreational drugs, not PEDs, are the NBA's major image plague. No one's even sure if PEDs help NBA players; at the very least, it's presumed that they're not part of the sport's culture. Naturally, the league would rather have Miles or Hunter associated with a mysterious outlier, one that doesn't really mean anything in particular in the context of the NBA, than add to the league's extant image problem.↵

This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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