We've all seen this story before. An athlete tests positive for a banned substance, then follows it up with the same set of excuses as the many before them: I didn't know what was in a supplement; I must've taken something tainted; I think someone slipped me something. O.J. Mayo followed the trend on Thursday after the NBA announced Mayo would be suspended for 10 games after testing positive for a performance enhancing drug.
According to Mayo, the positive test was triggered by a supplement he didn't know was banned.
"It was an honest mistake, but I take full responsibility for my actions," Mayo said in the statement released by the team. "I apologize to my fans, teammates and the Grizzlies organization for regrettably not doing the necessary research about what supplements I can put in my body."
It probably was an honest mistake, compounded by the lengthy and sometimes confusing banned substance list the NBA maintains. Ultimately the responsibility falls on the athlete to police themselves, and check every single supplement and substance that goes into their body. Fail to do so and expect to face the consequences, both on the court and in the pocket.
It's nice he owned up to it and admitted a mistake, but it leaves his team in a tough spot as they work around his absence right in the middle of a playoff run. Simply double-checking the supplement in question could've spared Mayo the embarrassment and saved him from a suspension.