OT: Sparks Player Arrested for Burglary & Assault

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bballnut90

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I understand your concern, and I'm NOT making any excuses for her or her behavior.
But you have to remember that she has been with the Sparks for several years, and all of the players and coaches are very comfortable with her as a teammate, and her presence in their locker room.

NFL player Ezekiel Elliott (Dallas Cowboys) was suspended by the Commissioner for 6 games several years ago for an off field incident that he was never formally charged for by a DA. The NFL has a problem with its players running afoul of the law (DUI, domestic violence, etc) regularly. No doubt the WNBA has policies and protocols in place to deal with matters of this nature. It's extremely rare for a current WNBA player to get arrested or charged with a crime.
She apparently threatened to shoot someone 18 times while holding a gun up to them. That is much different than a DUI.

Neither of the rookies have played with her. None of Alexis Jones, Chiney Ogwumike and Tierra Ruffin-Pratt either. That's 5/11 teammates, or almost half of the team. All of the coaches are new to Riquna too besides one assistant.
 
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She’s in the WNBA so how does the Celebrity get out of jail free card apply? Most would consider it witness protection...:rolleyes:
This is a very serious issue and story that I hope gets thoroughly addressed and handled for the sake of everyone involved.

But that "Most would consider it witness protection" comment had me howling laughing lol
 

Huskee11

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From the rumor mill.

What on earth are they waiting for?

 
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From the rumor mill.

What on earth are they waiting for?

Waiting on the (hoped-for) disappearance of media attention, most likely.
In the absence of a die-down, waiting until the last possible instant to take action.

I love this quote from Penny Toler:

High Post Hoops asked Williams whether Sparks general manager Penny Toler had discussed the incident with her last month, and Williams responded: “No, absolutely not. We’re just focused on bringing another championship and you know that’s not the focus. That’s in Florida, I’m here in California, so this is the focus.” Toler signed Williams after she was arrested.​
So according to Toler Williams, as long as a player commits violent felonies in a different state than the team they play for, it's all good. :rolleyes:
 
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Waiting on the (hoped-for) disappearance of media attention, most likely.
In the absence of a die-down, waiting until the last possible instant to take action.

I love this quite from Penny Toler:

High Post Hoops asked Williams whether Sparks general manager Penny Toler had discussed the incident with her last month, and Williams responded: “No, absolutely not. We’re just focused on bringing another championship and you know that’s not the focus. That’s in Florida, I’m here in California, so this is the focus.” Toler signed Williams after she was arrested.​
So according to Toler, as long as a player commits violent felonies in a different state than the team they play for, it's all good. :rolleyes:
We don’t know that Toler said that. What you quoted is Riquna’s account of their conversation. Consider the source.
 

UConnCat

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So NOW the league is considering suspending Williams. Why now rather than at the start of the season? A big reason has to be MLB’s decision to suspend Herrera despite the fact that the criminal charges were dropped. MLB did it’s own investigation, something the WNBA could have done. MLB’s actions make the WNBA’s inaction look really bad.

EDD’s nose is broken, btw.
 
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We don’t know that Toler said that. What you quoted is Riquna’s account of their conversation. Consider the source.
My apologies. You're of course correct. I'll amend.
 
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some pushback from the NBA

NBA legal counsel is urging the team to suspend his client under the Player Conduct and Discipline clause of the WNBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement.

 
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She apparently threatened to shoot someone 18 times while holding a gun up to them. That is much different than a DUI.

Neither of the rookies have played with her. None of Alexis Jones, Chiney Ogwumike and Tierra Ruffin-Pratt either. That's 5/11 teammates, or almost half of the team. All of the coaches are new to Riquna too besides one assistant.
And yet, not only is she still with the team, she’s a starter. Again, I’m not defending her behavior, but simply trying to bring to light that her teammates know her, have gotten comfortable (including the new ones) being in her presence, and (I assume) are not afraid of her.

The fact is she’s still on the team. You can’t argue that. Your beef is not with me. It’s with the WNBA, the team owner and the general manager that allows her to remain an active player.

I’m just a fan of the Sparks. Been one since Lisa Leslie became a member. I don’t have a say in her status. I’ll continue to wish the team well whether she plays or not. She’s not the only player on the team.
 
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nwhoopfan

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If she does get suspended, will she get a group of people rallying to support her? Because people who commit violent acts needs public support ya know.
 

bballnut90

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And yet, not only is she still with the team, she’s a starter. Again, I’m not defending her behavior, but simply trying to bring to light that her teammates know her, have gotten comfortable (including the new ones) being in her presence, and (I assume) are not afraid of her.

The fact is she’s still on the team. You can’t argue that. Your beef is not with me. It’s with the WNBA, the team owner and the general manager that allows her to remain an active player.

I’m just a fan of the Sparks. Been one since Lisa Leslie became a member. I don’t have a say in her status. I’ll continue to wish the team well whether she plays or not. She’s not the only player on the team.
My beef isn't with you but I'm just calling out incorrect statements and facts you claimed. And you have no idea if her teammates are comfortable with her in the locker room.
 
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My beef isn't with you but I'm just calling out incorrect statements and facts you claimed. And you have no idea if her teammates are comfortable with her in the locker room.
I should have said “I assume“ they are comfortable. I stand corrected on that observation. Most WNBA teams are close knit, and I assume the Sparks are a close knit team. It’s entirely possible that some of the new players don’t like her, or are not comfortable being around her. What are the other incorrect facts and statements?

If any of them are afraid, that would be an in-house matter that we would never hear about, and would be addressed behind closed doors.

Bottom line is some posters are having a problem with her being active (which is OK) but the league and team don’t, otherwise she’d be suspended. I'm simply looking at it from her teammate's perspective. We can’t do that. Again, I’m NOT defending her actions. I don’t care if she’s suspended or not. I’m not that involved with the team.

Please don't assume from my comments that I'm advocating for her in any way, I'm not. What I think the league should do in these two cases means nothing. I'm not judging her. I'll leave that to our legal system.

I'm simply commenting on her situation as I understand it. I’m just a fan from afar. When I watch a Sparks game, her legal situation never comes to mind. :)
 
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Her case hasn't been adjudicated yet. Nothing unusual about being free on bond while awaiting trial.

The questionable part is the league's inaction and the Sparks' decision to re-sign her despite full awareness of the nature of the charges against her.

I suppose it's a testament to the WNBA's relative obscurity that the league and the franchise can get away with this in today's climate.
I guess the WNBA can have it both ways. Be outraged that players don't make more money but be glad when an outrageous incident like this gets little or no attention. So far no repercussions from the Odyssey Simms DUI. Most major sports leagues would have suspended both players already.
 
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I guess the WNBA can have it both ways. Be outraged that players don't make more money but be glad when an outrageous incident like this gets little or no attention. So far no repercussions from the Odyssey Simms DUI. Most major sports leagues would have suspended both players already.
Based on the fact that these two players are still active, it appears the WNBA has decided to take a different approach in dealing with matters of this nature than other professional sports leagues.
 

TheFarmFan

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Based on the fact that these two players are still active, it appears the WNBA has decided to take a different approach in dealing with matters of this nature than other professional sports leagues.
The cynic in me thinks it's even more devious than that: in a decidedly down year in a league with half of its best players out with injuries, EuroBasket, or leave, like it or not, Williams and Sims have solid "WARP" (Wins Above Replacement Player); Sims is now averaging 5th in scoring and 5th in assists in the league, and Williams is putting up starter numbers for the Sparks. To me, the major difference between right now and when Griner and Johnson had their issues was that the league had a much better product that season, and Griner was a household name in a way neither of these players are, so the league is benefiting from their court performances and largely avoiding scrutiny for the off-court issues. That balance was very different with Griner and Johnson.
 

UConnNick

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The cynic in me thinks it's even more devious than that: in a decidedly down year in a league with half of its best players out with injuries, EuroBasket, or leave, like it or not, Williams and Sims have solid "WARP" (Wins Above Replacement Player); Sims is now averaging 5th in scoring and 5th in assists in the league, and Williams is putting up starter numbers for the Sparks. To me, the major difference between right now and when Griner and Johnson had their issues was that the league had a much better product that season, and Griner was a household name in a way neither of these players are, so the league is benefiting from their court performances and largely avoiding scrutiny for the off-court issues. That balance was very different with Griner and Johnson.
There may be a lot of truth to what you indicate, but I see a possible different, or perhaps additional reason. A $20k bond seems relatively low to me given the nature and extent of her alleged offenses. Her case involves aggravated assault with intent to do bodily harm. If I were the judge there's no way I'd let anybody out on a $20k bond for that offense.

I once got a call from a guy in jail who was referred to me by a female asst. DA, which is a major no-no. I think she had a crush on me after I represented a D and made a very favorable plea deal with her for my client.

The guy in jail was arrested on a charge of indecency with a child. He asked me to help arrange bond for him. A JP Court Judge had set his bond at $50k. I declined to represent him and gave him the number of some bail bond offices. The charges were later dropped or he was acquitted. About six months later the same guy got arrested for the same thing again.

That was a serious charge worthy of a $50k bond even as a first offense. So is this one. That's why I think there's far more to this story than anyone but the principals know, and anybody who's had access to the files and may have interviewed any of the persons involved.

Not to excuse them, but maybe the WNBA is moving slowly because they know something almost everybody else doesn't. Maybe there's some exculpatory evidence they have discovered in their investigation. That's the danger in suspending players before due process runs its course. Maybe they know there's a chance the charges may get dropped, or she stands a good chance of being acquitted, or a plea deal is in the works. You suspend a player and if she isn't convicted, you run the risk of getting sued.

It's not necessarily true that even if she's totally exonerated in court that she won't rightfully be hit with some suspension by the league due to her behavior, since it reflects poorly on the league.
 
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Instead of being devious, or intentionally moving slowly because they're in the know about some non-public details, could the WNBA just be understaffed and leaderless? The new commissioner Kathy Englebert hasn't even started yet (July 17). So who exactly are "they" at the WNBA??
 

UConnNick

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Instead of being devious, or intentionally moving slowly because they're in the know about some non-public details, could the WNBA just be understaffed and leaderless? The new commissioner Kathy Englebert hasn't even started yet (July 17). So who exactly are "they" at the WNBA??
That's a very good point, but if that's the reason they're slowly taking their time, it's crazy, and a very poor reflection on the league in general.
 
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What a shame. What a total waste of a talent and a person. It is too bad that her emotions got the better of her. I do hope that she can pull together the pieces and resume a life of creating self worth and contribution.

Years ago, and I mean many years ago, the courts use to place these young folks in the military to straighten out. Perhaps, she could have the same benefit and become a better person for her experience.
 
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She apparently threatened to shoot someone 18 times while holding a gun up to them. That is much different than a DUI.

Neither of the rookies have played with her. None of Alexis Jones, Chiney Ogwumike and Tierra Ruffin-Pratt either. That's 5/11 teammates, or almost half of the team. All of the coaches are new to Riquna too besides one assistant.
No, actually, it's not. Driving a 2 ton projectile while heavily intoxicated is at the very least as bad.
 
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Let us be realistic. None of the suspensions of players in the other leagues would have happened except those leagues were afraid of serious PR repercussions. It wasn't until the video of Rice knocking out his girlfriend in the elevator went viral that the NFL took even minimal action. And it was only due to public outrage of a slap on the wrist one-game suspension that the league enacted their no tolerance policy. The WNBA is not really high profile enough and not too many people care. The only place that any outrage is being even discussed is on these message boards. I don't believe the league took any action in respect to Griner and Johnsons DV incident either.

Not defending Williams actions, but according to the report, she never pointed the gun at anyone. Rather she laid it on the hood of her vehicle and threatened to give all 18. This could even be interpreted as a warning to the guy there to keep his distance. Kind of a self-defense threat.
 
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That's a very good point, but if that's the reason they're slowly taking their time, it's crazy, and a very poor reflection on the league in general.
Well, the league is a mess right now. The teams are bleeding money, their players have opted out of their CBA and want to be paid, many of their biggest stars aren't playing, they can't make up their mind how to market or who to market to, and no one's in charge.
 
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Let us be realistic. None of the suspensions of players in the other leagues would have happened except those leagues were afraid of serious PR repercussions....The WNBA is not really high profile enough and not too many people care. The only place that any outrage is being even discussed is on these message boards. I don't believe the league took any action in respect to Griner and Johnsons DV incident either.

Not defending Williams actions, but according to the report, she never pointed the gun at anyone. Rather she laid it on the hood of her vehicle and threatened to give all 18. This could even be interpreted as a warning to the guy there to keep his distance. Kind of a self-defense threat.
Griner & Johnson each got 7-game suspensions.
 
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