Nick Calathes Suspended 20 Games For Violating NBA Drug Policy

The NBA has suspended Memphis guard Nick Calathes 20 games for violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. According to reporter Adrian Wojnarowski, the suspension is effective immediately.

Though swiftly enacted, the suspension is not cut-and-dry. Calathes’ drug test turned up positive with traces of Tamoxifen, a masking agent used to disguise the effects of steroids and testosterone. Per Yahoo!, Calathes did not have elevated testosterone levels, nor did his test register positive for PEDs.

The NBA Player Association (NBAPA) has called the suspension, “a true injustice.”

“Our collectively bargained program failed this player and this case will certainly be recalled when we return to the bargaining table,” [NBAPA executive director Ron] Klempner told Yahoo Sports. “In the meantime, we’ll file an appeal and allow the process to run its course.”

Calathes will sit out his team’s first round series against Oklahoma City, and will likely miss the entire 2014 Playoffs. Should that happen, his suspension will carry over to the beginning of next season. In his reserve role for Memphis, Calathes has averaged 16.5 minutes, and nearly 5 points, 3 assists and 2 rebounds per game.

[Beyond The Buzzer]