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STERN TO TESTIFY IN SPREWELL HEARING; GAG ORDER LOOSENED
Published February 5, 1998
Warriors coach P.J. Carlesimo testified for seven hours yesterday at the Latrell Sprewell hearing, according to Athelia Knight of the WASHINGTON POST. Also testifying on Wednesday was NBA Dir of Security Horace Balmer, who will resume his testimony this morning. Commissioner David Stern "also is expected to testify" today (WASHINGTON POST, 2/5). TBS' Craig Sager reported that Carlesimo "established that there was a second attack" by Sprewell and that he "did return, did swing at the coach, and did use the phrase, 'I'll kill you.'" Last week during his testimony, Sprewell "denied the second attack," saying he was held back by teammates before contact was made. Sager noted that "under [CA] law it does not matter whether contact was made. An assault is defined as an attempt." Sager also reported, contrary to earlier reports, that Sprewell "didn't hang up the phone on Balmer and was cooperative" when Balmer called him to investigate the incident in December (TBS, 2/4). TENSIONS RISING? In San Jose, Jesse Barkin writes that Carlesimo had a "long day ... if cross-examination from [NBPA] attorney Jeffrey Kessler was anything like it has been for other witnesses." Barkin quotes a witness as saying of Kessler, "At one point, I felt like punching the guy" (MERCURY NEWS, 2/5). In N.Y., Mike Wise reports that arbitrator John Feerick made a "slight modification" to his gag order, ruling that Stern, NBA Dep. Commissioner Russ Granik, NBPA Exec Dir Billy Hunter and a Warriors team rep "can state general beliefs or opinions about the case" during All-Star Weekend. But, they can't give "any specifics" on the hearing or testimony (N.Y. TIMES, 2/5).