Musselman suspended by NBA for DUI arrest

Updated: February 2, 2007, 8:59 AM ET news services

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Kings coach Eric Musselman has been suspended without pay for two games for driving under the influence, in violation of California state law, the NBA announced Thursday.

Eric Musselman
Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty ImagesThrough some of his own doing, Eric Musselman's season has gone from bad, to worse, to a two-game suspension.

Musselman will miss the Kings' upcoming games against the Denver Nuggets on Saturday and the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets on Monday, the league said.

Musselman pleaded no contest in Sacramento last Thursday to driving under the influence of alcohol. He was arrested in October after his team won its preseason home opener.

Musselman must pay $580 in fines and penalties, Lana Wyant, a spokeswoman for the district attorney's office, said Friday. The coach was ordered to spend 48 hours on a work project and participate in a first-offender program. He will serve three years on informal probation after he completes the program.

Musselman entered the plea in Sacramento County Superior Court. A no-contest plea has the same effect as a guilty plea in criminal court for sentencing purposes, but it cannot be used against a defendant if there is a lawsuit.

Musselman was pulled over Oct. 21 after he cut off another motorist, jail records say. He registered a blood-alcohol level of 0.11 percent, above the state's legal limit of 0.08 percent, according to the arrest report.

The arrest marked the start of a difficult year for Musselman. The Kings are last in the NBA's Pacific Division, with a 18-26 record midway through the season.

"As I've stated in the past, I made a mistake and take full responsibility," Musselman said in a statement. "Hopefully, this will provide closure on the matter.

"In my absence, Scott Brooks will coach the team. I have the utmost confidence in our coaching staff, and I look forward to returning to the sidelines when the suspension is over. Under the suspension guidelines, I am allowed to coach practices and shootarounds, which I plan on doing."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.