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News » Mullin mum on possible punishment for Ellis 2008-09-26

Mullin mum on possible punishment for Ellis 2008-09-26

Mullin mum on possible punishment for Ellis 2008-09-26
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Chris Mullin hopes Monta Ellis learned something about maturity when a misadventure with a moped left the Golden State guard with a severely sprained ankle.

The Warriors still haven't decided whether Ellis will feel that lesson in his wallet as well.

Mullin, the Warriors' top basketball executive, and coach Don Nelson tried Thursday to stay out of the debate about whether the Warriors will fine Ellis for participating in an offseason activity prohibited in the guard's new six-year, $66 million contract. Ellis will miss training camp and at least several weeks of the regular season after injuring his left ankle last month in his native Mississippi.

Mullin essentially confirmed a recent report in the San Francisco Chronicle that Ellis' injury occurred in a low-speed moped crash. Ellis initially told the team he was injured while playing hoops, only to change his story days later.

"I don't think anyone felt like it was the best-case scenario," Mullin said of Ellis' shifting story. "There were some things that should have been done differently. I think he understands that. With all that said, now is the time for him to have our support. He did do something wrong and needs to be accountable for it, but I do think all the energy and effort goes into getting him healthy."

Ellis underwent surgery to repair a torn ligament in his ankle, but the team still isn't certain how long its top returning scorer must spend in rehabilitation. The Warriors can't even be sure Ellis will still have the speed and skill that helped him to average 20.2 points last season.

Ellis is likely to miss a significant amount of the regular season, and Golden State must decide whether it's financially worthwhile to fine Ellis for his shenanigans at the risk of alienating the player expected to be the centerpiece of Nelson's offense this fall.

Nelson claimed he wasn't aware of Ellis' shifting story during his summer relaxation in Maui, and Ellis hasn't responded to requests for comment. Warriors president Robert Rowell, who hasn't given interviews about Ellis' accident, released a noncommittal statement Thursday.

"We have scheduled a meeting with Monta's representatives to take place within the next 7-10 days, and upon conclusion we will have a public announcement regarding our decision," Rowell said.

Ellis' troubles have taken the camp spotlight off Mullin and Nelson, who both will head into the season in the final year of their contracts. Both men claim they have no worries about their futures at Golden State, and Nelson hasn't decided whether he even wants to coach after this season.


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Added: September 26, 2008


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