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  • A-Rod Admission: Steroids Again Overshadowing Spring Training

    Tejada's Steroid Case, In Addition To A-Rod,
    Overshadowing Opening Of Spring Training
    MLB teams this weekend begin reporting to Spring Training, but the league "once again is confronted with a full-blown steroids eruption, complete with renewed congressional scrutiny, judicial action and a new face to a scandal that is now in its second decade," according to Dave Sheinin of the WASHINGTON POST. The sport "remains unable to escape the taint" of steroid use with Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez' admission he used performance-enhancing drugs from '01-03 and Astros SS Miguel Tejada being charged yesterday with lying to congressional investigators in '05 about the use of PEDs in baseball. The ongoing situations regarding Rodriguez, Tejada, Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens "all involve actions taken six or more years ago," but for MLB, the "scariest part is the future, and that which remains as yet undisclosed" (WASHINGTON POST, 2/11). In Baltimore, David Steele writes MLB should be "sweating like a junkie in withdrawal from the reminder of the Tejada-[Rafael] Palmeiro ties to not one, not two, but three of the game's most tainted organizations" -- the Orioles, the A's and the Rangers. The news of this week "reminds us, hopefully for good, that there's no end in sight" (Baltimore SUN, 2/11). In California, Bob Keisser writes Rodriguez' admission is the "juiciest story to come along in sports perhaps ever, and one without end." This is an "epic story of a sport without shame, a sport that looked a crisis in the eye, turned its head away in scorn and felt it could get away with anything." But it "turns out it can't get away with anything" (Long Beach PRESS-TELEGRAM, 2/11).

    CANNOT ESCAPE THE PAST: In DC, Tom Knott writes Rodriguez admitting to using PEDs is "perhaps as damaging to baseball as Bonds and Clemens." MLB is "destined to experience another 'Back to the Future' season in 2009," and it "cannot get ahead of the steroids era because of its vow of privacy." The vow "did not work in Rodriguez's favor, no more than it will work in the favor of those to follow" (WASHINGTON TIMES, 2/11). In West Palm Beach, Dave George writes all fans "ever wanted from Alex Rodriguez was to bring blessed closure to the question of who deserves to be lauded as all-time home run champ," but MLB instead has a "patch of scorched earth." George: "Makes more sense from this point forward to conclude, for argument's sake, that everybody used some sort of performance-enhancing substance during baseball's unsupervised steroid era" (PALM BEACH POST, 2/11). In Milwaukee, Michael Hunt: "What another fine mess for [MLB Commissioner] Bud Selig and his game. Just when he thought he was out, they're pulling him back in." Selig for the past few years had "made the rounds to spread his gospel of progress against the cheaters." While MLB has "made advancements with its drug problem," there is "another can of escaping worms for the commish to worry about" (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 2/11). The Nation’s Dave Zirin said, "When you look at who has anabolic egg on their face, it’s Bud Selig who’s been pushing Alex Rodriguez as this sort of clean home run king alternative to Barry Bonds” (“Outside The Lines,” ESPN, 2/10). In Utah, Brad Rock writes under the header, "Baseball Strikes Out Again" (DESERET NEWS, 2/11). Dodgers Owner Frank McCourt said of hearing the news Rodriguez tested positive, "Ugh -- that was my first reaction. Here we go again. ... It’s the past that we have to deal with on a daily basis" ("Hot Stove," MLB Network, 2/10).

    EDITORIAL ROUNDUP: A PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER editorial states, "It's been revealed that another one of the biggest stars in baseball abused steroids. It's become part of the new annual national pastime." MLB "can't be trusted to police itself, even now that it has finally begun testing players" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 2/11). A USA TODAY editorial states, "This week's news shows that the sorry steroid saga is far from finished." Rodriguez' apology Monday on ESPN was "fleeting and incomplete," and MLB officials "didn't help much, either." Selig did not comment and is waiting for more details, but "what exactly does he need to know?" (USA TODAY, 2/11). A N.Y. TIMES editorial states MLB has "stepped up its drug testing in recent years, but it would be reckless to assume that it has emerged from a steroid-tarnished era." Is there "any star player in [MLB] who has not taken performance-enhancing drugs?" (N.Y. TIMES, 2/11). The TORONTO STAR: "Why should we care? While athletes like Rodriguez are clearly just ordinary mortals, we put them on a pedestal. And when they lie and cheat, as Rodriguez did, it sends a cynical message to society, especially young people" (TORONTO STAR, 2/11).

    Poll Shows Majority Of Fans Would Support
    Favorite Athlete If They Admitted To Steroid Use
    DOES IT BOTHER THE FANS? ESPN.com's Peter Keating noted a recent ESPN SportsNation poll revealed that 38% of respondents said that they were "surprised by the revelations about Rodriguez and steroids." When asked whether they would "forgive A-Rod for his transgressions," 38% of those polled said yes, 33% said no and 30% responded that there was "no need to forgive anything." Also, 15% of poll participants said that they "wouldn't care at all" if their favorite athlete admitted steroid use, while another 43% indicated that they would be "disappointed but would still support" him or her. Keating wrote the "unscientific survey results speak to the queasy but real consensus that has developed among baseball fans about performance enhancement: they now suspect its use among players" (ESPN.com, 2/10). In DC, Thomas Boswell writes, "Someday, A-Rod's dream of a best-case scenario may come true. Someday it may be generally accepted that he only cheated for three years and only lied for eight. What a great guy, relatively speaking." If that "time comes, Rodriguez may only be mildly detested by fans, not utterly shunned" (WASHINGTON POST, 2/11).

    STOP THE PUBLIC CRITICISM: In DC, Sally Jenkins writes performance-enhancing drugs are a "culture issue, not a baseball, football or track issue." By "chastising athletes for it, aren't we really hindering our ability to get at the whole truth?" It is a "fundamental question, for instance, whether [MLB] has a larger performance-enhancement problem than Hollywood, and whether athletes use more artificial aids in the performance of their jobs than Sylvester Stallone." The "public flogging of athletes and the forced extraction of their confessions is becoming a disgusting spectacle" (WASHINGTON POST, 2/11). CBSSPORTS.com's Gregg Doyel: "Getting disgusted at drug cheats is the easy thing to do, and for a few years, it felt like the right thing to do. But it doesn't feel right anymore. ... I'm not outraged anymore. What I am, and what I suspect a lot of you are, is tired of the charade" (CBSSPORTS.com, 2/10). ESPN's Michael Wilbon: “Fans just don’t care the way folks in the media want them to” ("PTI," ESPN, 2/10).

    PEER PRESSURE: The Washington Post's Boswell noted the "greatest deterrent" to MLBers using performance-enhancing drugs is not the league's current testing program, though it is getting "better." Instead, the biggest reason is seeing a "seven-time MVP (Bonds), a seven-time Cy Young Award-winner (Clemens) and the player who was going to hit 800 home runs and break every home run record (Rodriguez), all of those people completely brought low." Boswell: "If you are taking steroids now, you’re nuts, and players know that” (“The Newshour With Jim Lehrer,” PBS, 2/10).

    APOLOGY ACCEPTED? On Long Island, Wallace Matthews examines Rodriguez' apology on Monday under the header, "A-Rod Should Apologize For His Sorry Performance." It has become "laughable to hear the expressions of sympathy and support for poor, besieged A-Rod coming from all corners of the baseball universe." He is "being lauded for his honesty (huh?), his courage (say what?) and his ability to face down the adversity, which of course is totally of his own making." The "skewed reality at work here is truly mind-boggling and the hypocrisy jaw-dropping" (NEWSDAY, 2/11). In Seattle, Steve Kelley writes Rodriguez' apology was "all about damage control and image repair." The move was the "right thing to do, but it was a shallow, gratuitous performance." Kelley: "But what has happened in baseball really isn't much different from what is happening on Wall Street, is it?" (SEATTLE TIMES, 2/11). ESPN.com's Tim Keown wrote for his "parsed and incomplete bout of public honesty, Rodriguez immediately becomes one of the more dignified members of the all-star class of baseball's steroid users" (ESPN.com, 2/10). However, ESPN.com's Fainaru-Wada & Quinn cited steroid experts who said that it is "implausible that the superstar had no idea what substances he was taking" (ESPN.com, 2/10).

    CBS' "Late Show" Pokes Fun At A-Rod
    With Library Footage Of Him Getting Rub Down
    LAUGH IT UP: Rodriguez has become fodder for the late-night talk shows since his admission Monday. CBS' David Letterman said, "This baseball scandal, I'm telling you, every time you turn around there's something giving baseball a black eye. In terms of steroids I've always heard and I don't really know about it: one is called a clear. I don't know what that means. Another is a cream. I think the cream is a topical application. Well, listen to this. We have exclusive footage now, I can't tell you where we got it, of Alex Rodriguez having the cream applied. Biff seems to be involved somehow." The broadcast then aired old footage of Stage Manager Biff Henderson rubbing lotion on a shirtless Rodriguez ("Late Show," CBS, 2/10). NBC’s Jay Leno: "Before I begin, I want to say, I'm doing tonight's monologue without any performance-enhancing drugs! I think that will become evident as I move through the monologue" ("The Tonight Show," NBC, 2/10). Versus' Matt Iseman: "The one thing we do know is that whatever performance-enhancing drug he used had an expiration date of early October. Luckily, all this attention on A-Rod will give Michael Phelps a chance to exhale" ("Sports Soup," Versus, 2/10).

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  • A-Rod Admission: Fehr Says Union Unlikely To Release More Names

    Fehr Says Anonymity Promised To Participants
    In '03 Drugs Tests Should Be Honored
    MLBPA Exec Dir Donald Fehr yesterday "called it 'unlikely' that his association would follow the recommendation of several players to release the entire list" of players who tested positive in MLB's survey testing in '03, according to Bill Shaikin of the L.A. TIMES. Fehr said that he "expected to discuss the issue with players in coming weeks but said the anonymity promised to participants in the 2003 drug tests should be honored." Fehr: "Whatever rights individual players had under those agreements have to be respected." The call to release the 104 names comes after Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez' name was leaked to SI's Selena Roberts and David Epstein last week. Shaikin notes with Spring Training beginning this weekend, the "stain of baseball's steroid era continued to spread." Angels CF Torii Hunter: "I'm upset that those names on the list came out. Someone dropped the ball. Those other 103 players, they might as well bring those names out too. If A-Rod's name is out there, others should be." One AL player said, "There was lots of talk in spring training last year that the names would come out, and we confronted Fehr in our meeting about it. ... A lot of people like me want it to come out now that it's started. Lots of speculation about who's on there will be erased. There's a side of me that says it should never come out, but there's another side of integrity." Meanwhile, Fehr said that the MLBPA had "consulted with lawyers about the possibility of an investigation into who might have disclosed Rodriguez's result," but that "no decisions had been reached." Fehr added that he was "disturbed by the disclosure" (L.A. TIMES, 2/11). Former MLBPA Exec Dir Marvin Miller: "The first question ought to be: 104 names all testing positive, but you leak only A-Rod's. Why is that?" (AP, 2/10).

    TUG OF WAR: In N.Y., Michael Schmidt reports the "most likely way more of those ... names will come out is if the federal government prevails in its legal battle to keep possession of the seized positive tests." If the government is allowed to keep the tests, prosecutors "plan to summon everyone, active and retired, who had positive samples in 2003 and ask them where they obtained the substances that they used." That information would "allow the prosecutors to go after their consistent target -- the distributors." And if testimony from those players is "used in government documents to obtain search warrants or charge individuals, their identities could become public." Those players "could also be called as witnesses at trials." The fact that this is a possibility "has created misgivings between" MLB and the MLBPA, and those misgivings have "come into focus in the days since it was disclosed that Rodriguez tested positive" (N.Y. TIMES, 2/11). Dodgers Owner Frank McCourt said, "We need to find a way to clear the air on this because we have a new system in place and moving forward I think we’re in good shape. But, we can’t have this drip, drip, drip of everyday another piece of news that really soils the game" ("Hot Stove," MLB Network, 2/10). An MLB exec described the MLB-MLBPA relationship as "like a marriage." The exec: "You have rough patches, but you get through them." FOXSPORTS.com's Ken Rosenthal writes this is "maybe the roughest [patch] since the 2002 labor negotiations." There is "mounting distrust between the two sides over baseball's free-agent market and drug-testing program, issues that were sources of contention in past labor disputes" (FOXSPORTS.com, 2/11). 

    NAMES NOT LIKELY ANYTIME SOON: Fehr said of the possibility of the remaining names becoming public, "There's a legally binding mandate that would prevent people from disclosing (the list). I would hope that people adhere to that." Fehr "expressed confidence that this issue wouldn't contribute to a future work stoppage." The CBA runs through the '11 MLB season, and Fehr said, "If we do (have tension in the next CBA negotiations), it's far more likely going to be over economic issues than drug-testing ones" (NEWSDAY, 2/11). SI.com's Michael McCann wrote it is unlikely the remaining names will be made public "for the foreseeable future," as for the MLBPA to "now release the remaining 103 names would violate the trust placed by players in union executives." Such a violation would "possibly expose the MLBPA to liability for breach of its duties," as the players "could suffer serious reputational damage if identified as a steroids user." While there are "multiple rationales for the MLBPA to preserve the confidentiality of the 103 names, there is at least one justification for it to release the information: Doing so would cease the skepticism directed toward numerous players who, over the last 48 hours, have become the undeserving targets of Internet and sports radio speculation as to whether they are among the 103." Along those lines, a player or group of players "could attempt to persuade, even force, the MLBPA to release the list." It also is "possible that players could pursue direct legal channels to force the MLBPA to reveal the names" (SI.com, 2/10).

    Cashman Says Players Promised Anonymity
    Should Not Have Their Rights Violated
    FREE THE INNOCENT: In N.Y., Bill Madden writes it "would be nice if the names of those other 103 players who tested positive ... are revealed if only for the sake of the other 500-plus players who didn't" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 2/11). In St. Louis, Bryan Burwell writes now there is a "new countdown in baseball that is absent even the faintest sliver of romance." Burwell: "How many days until the other 103 are exposed?" MLB's new "spring rite of passage is marking the days until someone else gets the Alex Rodriguez treatment," as everyone in MLB "knows it's coming sooner or later." Burwell: "I hope that before the position players arrive in camp, we are already exposing every single one of the other 103 names on that list of failed tests" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 2/11). But Yankees GM Brian Cashman "believes the players who were promised anonymity shouldn't 'have their rights violated' by being outed" for testing positive (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 2/11).

    PLACING BLAME: In Toronto, Richard Griffin writes under the header, "Positive Tests Shouldn't Come As A Surprise To Fans." The "biggest internal culprit" is MLBPA COO Gene Orza, who was "supposed to destroy all of the player samples after the numbers had been compiled and the agreement fulfilled." If Orza had done that, Rodriguez "would have remained merely a number," but Orza "always thought himself smarter than the rest." Orza "saved the samples, hoping to use any 'false positive' as the means to the end of drug testing" (TORONTO STAR, 2/11). In Philadelphia, Sam Donnellon writes Orza and Fehr "facilitated so much of this in the wild late-1980s and '90s, shielded the cheaters by blocking every attempt to institute a credible drug-testing policy, made them feel immune even from the kind of week that A-Rod is now having." Orza and Fehr "think they protected their constituency all those years," but "in truth, they damned them all" (PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS, 2/11). In Newark, Jerry Izenberg writes under the header, "MLB Players' Union Deserves To Take A Big Hit." Izenberg: "This is about ... Donald Fehr and Gene Orza from the players union. A union that is not a union but an insult to the uphill battle Marvin Miller waged against the baseball owners' plantation mentality. ... Maybe I'm missing something here, but unions are really supposed to protect their members" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 2/11).

    Writer Says Execs Like Fehr (l) And Selig (r)
    Don't Deserve Walks On Steroid Era
    TOP EXECS AT FAULT: YAHOO SPORTS' Jeff Passan wrote under the header, "Selig, Fehr Don't Deserve Walks." Passan: "Revenues and attendance don’t make a renaissance. Under Selig and Fehr’s leadership, the greatest pitcher and hitter have had grand juries called to investigate whether they perjured themselves, the best player just spent a half hour telling the world how he cheated, the ultimate home run masher went all J.D. Salinger, 103 others are gnawing their nails in hopes their names don’t surface and a former MVP ... is pressing his nicest suit and hoping for probation and nothing more." Selig and Fehr have "done everything they can to avoid" an apology. Passan: "Saying sorry takes ownership, something Selig and Fehr have avoided from the beginning of the steroid scandal to now, perhaps its nadir after months of peace and quiet had rendered it barely an issue" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 2/10). In Houston, Jerome Solomon writes, "Many of us will never be satisfied with the government's involvement with professional sports' steroids issue until it moves up a couple of rungs. Charge an MLB executive with a crime." Solomon: "Has a Congressional staffer ever interviewed Bud Selig? How about the government spending time and money chasing Selig's lies?" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 2/11). In Dallas, Kevin Sherrington writes if Selig "wants to save baseball," he needs to "resurrect the idea of an asterisk, and Bud Selig needs to leave a mark this time." Sherrington: "Stamping asterisks on all those implicated by more than mere rumor would restore baseball's most cherished records, allow players to continue to work and provide some much-needed relief for beleaguered fans. Baseball could do worse for itself" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 2/11).

    BLAST FROM THE PAST: ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick noted Miller has "defended the union's conduct and accused the federal government and major drug testing bodies of engaging in a 'witch hunt' against prominent athletes." Miller yesterday said that MLBPA leaders are "now paying for their biggest mistake -- the decision to bow to public and Congressional pressure and enter into an agreement with [MLB] to institute mandatory testing" in '04. Miller: "Everything I've read in the last few days is unfair and anti-union. But that does not mean I agree that (union officials) are without blame. When they agreed on a testing program, I said, 'They're going to regret this, because you're going to see players going to jail.' ... I would never have agreed to any testing program in the first place. There's no evidence that's plausible to justify testing people indiscriminately." Miller said of the government's involvement, "It's a witch hunt in baseball, for sure, but it also extends to cycling and the Olympics. And the victims are the athletes. They're obviously the ones being hunted down here." Miller added, "The media, without evidence, keep telling young people all over the country, 'All you have to do to be a famous athlete with lots of money is take steroids.' The media are the greatest merchants of encouraging this that I've ever seen" (ESPN.com, 2/10).

    Writer Notes Boras' Biggest
    Clients Have Been Sluggers
    DON'T FREE THE AGENTS: The GLOBE & MAIL's Jeff Blair writes there is a "detectable shift as a result of Rodriguez's confession," as the onus is "starting to fall more" on the players and the MLBPA. The union under the leadership of Miller and Fehr has been "free of the financial shenanigans, internal squabbles and ineffective bargaining of every other players' union," and Fehr's "missteps have been few." Blair: "But at some point, players need to start asking their union: ' Guys, just what the hell is going on here?'" Meanwhile, another, "previously unscathed group will need to be called to account," the player agents (GLOBE & MAIL, 2/11). In Ft. Worth, Gil LeBreton notes Rodriguez is repped by Scott Boras, who has "long seemed to be infatuated by the home run." Boras' biggest clients "have been the big sluggers, presumably because that's where the big money lies." LeBreton: "Let's go down another list, one that includes Kevin Brown, Rick Ankiel, Scott Schoeneweis, Barry Bonds and Gary Sheffield. All, at one time of another, have been Boras clients. All have been mentioned in connection with the Mitchell Report" (FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 2/11).

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  • A-Rod Admission: Players, Execs Offer Mixed Reactions To The News

    Gossage Says He Wants To Know The Other
    103 Players Who Tested Positive In '03
    MLB players and execs are offering a variety of reactions to the news Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs from '01-03. Marlins President David Samson said, "It was my understanding all those names were supposed to be confidential, so it's hard to even comment." Marlins Special Assistant Andre Dawson: "A lot of players, elite players in the game, have been hurt as a result of it. If you're going to expose people, expose everybody. ... The fact of the matter is it's damaging (to Rodriguez)" (South Florida SUN-SENTINEL, 2/11). Red Sox 1B Kevin Youkilis: "It's definitely not fair to just pinpoint one guy. I don't know if somebody had it in for him. I don't know what because it seems like just to take one name out of that whole group is a little odd to me." Baseball HOFer Goose Gossage: "I want to know who these other 100 guys are. Let's get it all out in the open" (AP, 2/11). Cardinals LF Skip Schumaker: "If you're going to throw one guy under the bus, everybody should be thrown under it. That list was long and it was up to the union to keep it under wraps. But now that they didn't do it, I think it's only fair that everyone else's name should come out as well" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 2/11). White Sox P Matt Thornton: "It's frustrating to be put in that whole group. What is it, 104 names out of 1,200 or so? A lot of us should be saying, 'We don't have anything to worry about, I was clean.' When you have your big-name players under this, though, I mean (Rodriguez) was the poster boy for so much. He goes down, that hurts everyone a bit" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 2/11).

    Wright Believes Rodriguez' 
    Apology Was Sincere
    APOLOGY ACCEPTED: Mets 3B David Wright said, "You can't ever condone using banned substances. You can't ever condone cheating. But with that being said, I think [Rodriguez] did a tremendous job owning up to it and I think his apology was sincere." Wright added, "I see what he's done the last few years, and it's pretty incredible the consistency throughout his career. I think he's a great player, and when I think it's all said and done, he'll be the best player to ever play the game." But Wright said, "It's very unfair to throw all of baseball into that because you had [5%] test positive (in 2003). I think it should be zero, and I think we're pretty close to that now" (NEWSDAY, 2/11). More Wright: "If I had to guess, I would guess that the game is clean and we're weeding out the cheaters" (Bergen RECORD, 2/11). Baseball HOFer George Brett said, "The one thing I am impressed with is he came right out and admitted it." But Brett added, "I was crushed by the news" (MLB.com, 2/11).

    DAMAGE DONE: Gossage said as a result of Rodriguez' admission, "everything has been smudged -- the Yankees, baseball, A-Rod, everyone involved and all of these other guys, too." More Gossage: "Alex is probably going to break the (home-run) record, but all credibility is out the window. Henry Aaron did it clean and that's the bottom line. Anything else is tainted and what does it mean?" (N.Y. POST, 2/11).  Former MLB Commissioner Fay Vincent in a special to SPORTINGNEWS.com wrote, "I don't think anybody comes out of this whole period looking well. A-Rod has been hurt very badly. So has (Barry) Bonds. So has (Roger) Clemens. Baseball itself is hurt. ... I feel bad for baseball. It hurts baseball very badly" (SPORTINGNEWS.com, 2/10). D'Backs LF Eric Byrnes: "This is terrible for the game. I couldn't think of worse timing, and really I couldn't think of a worse player for this to happen to” ("BDSSP," FSN, 2/10). Meanwhile, Astros P Roy Oswalt said, "A-Rod's numbers shouldn't count for anything. I feel like he cheated me out of the game" (MLB.com, 2/11).

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  • Troy Vincent's Involvement In Web Site Bring New Questions

    Helfand Says Vincent Was Never Involved
    With ProAthletesOnly.com Web Site
    As the NFLPA Exec committee is set to meet later this week to make the final cut of candidates who will stand for election to succeed the late Gene Upshaw as the next Exec Dir, new questions are being raised about presumed frontrunner Troy Vincent. The N.Y. Post reported yesterday that a small, unnamed group of former NFL players thought Vincent's business interests, including his ties to Web site ProAthletesOnly.com, could hurt his NFLPA candidacy. ProAthletesOnly.com Founder Scott Helfand was arrested last month, accused of violating his probation in a grand theft case in which he pleaded guilty to taking $150,000 from former NFLer Oliver Gibson. Attempts to reach Vincent for comment were unsuccessful, and his exact role in the Web site is unclear. A press release issued in March '07 stated that Vincent had joined the Web site's parent company as a partner and board member, but another athlete who invested in the site said Vincent had not been part of the company for about a year. Former MLBer Junior Spivey said that Helfand persuaded him to invest in the site in '07 by telling him that Vincent and NFL Cardinals RB Edgerrin James were involved in the venture, but that Vincent "stepped away" from ProAthletesOnly.com in early '08. Spivey added that it would be unfair if Vincent's involvement in the site damaged his NFLPA candidacy. Spivey said none of the athletes who invested or lent their names to the Web site knew about Helfand's arrest in the grand theft case involving Gibson, or that he had a $115,000 lien placed against him by Devin Bush, another former NFLer.

    VINCENT LISTED AS SITE CO-OWNER IN BIO: Although Spivey said Vincent has separated from the site, Vincent's biography on the Web site Eltekon.com for a financial advisory firm he co-owns said as late as last month that Vincent "owns all or part of several companies, including ... Pro-Athletes Only." The bio was changed about the time that Helfand was arrested. Attempts to reach Helfand were also unsuccessful yesterday. But in an interview with SportsBusiness Journal last month, Helfand said that Vincent was never involved in the Web site or the parent company, despite press releases and Vincent's own bios to the contrary. Helfand said that no athletes had invested their personal funds in the venture. Spivey, however, said that he invested more than $10,000 of his personal funds in the venture and that another baseball player Spivey would not identify had invested more. Multiple football sources said at least one NFL player had invested personal funds in the venture.

    ELTEKON REFUTES POST ARTICLE: Eltekon today released a statement responding to the allegations in yesterday's N.Y. Post article and saying the company stands behind Vincent. The statement read in part, "We fully support Mr. Vincent in his leadership role with Eltekon and are proud to be associated with him."

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