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Former NBA player Marcus Williams suspended in China for failed marijuana test

Jan 1, 2013, 5:01 PM EDT

Marcus Williams

The Chinese Basketball Association had never had a player suspended for violating its drug policy… until now.

Multiple reports out of China now say former NBA player Marcus Williams has been suspended for testing positive for marijuana use. Hoopshype noticed this first, but here is the report from

Former NBA player Marcus Williams has been tested positive for marijuana to record the first doping case in China’s professional basketball league, the national basketball governing body announced on Monday.

Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) said in a statement that the point guard, playing for Shanxi, was banned for six months and the club was fined 10,000 yuan (about 1,500 U.S. dollars) following his positive test on Dec. 9.

First, we need to point out something Tom Ziller noted at SBN: This is Marcus Williams who played for the Spurs and Clippers out of the University of Arizona (he is not Marcus Williams who played for the Nets and Warriors out of UConn).

This penalty is a lot stiffer than stateside. In the NBA, you have to test positive for marijuana three times to get a suspension and then it is only five games. (You get a five-game suspension immediately for testing positive for steroids, and the penalties are much harsher for cocaine, opiates and pretty much every hard drug you imagine.)

Williams is done for this season in China. He may be playing elsewhere overseas next season.

  1. hardballtalkusername - Jan 1, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    You only get suspended 5 games for testing positive for steroids? Wow that should be at least a 25 game suspension.

  2. tuberippin - Jan 1, 2013 at 8:08 PM

    Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait.

    Smoke a joint, which doesn’t enhance performance = six month ban
    Shoot up some ‘roids, which does enhance performance = five game ban

    Incredibly stupid set of rules they have over there.

    • saint1997 - Jan 1, 2013 at 10:55 PM

      dude read the article. The rule for steroid use applies in USA, rule for marijiuna use is in China

  3. badintent - Jan 2, 2013 at 1:08 AM

    He’s lucky they are only deporting his ass, if he went to Chinese jail now, no heat, cotton uniform one size fits all ), one meal a day, no medical and Lots of work outside for idiots like him.China known for strict drug laws. Betcha Starbury is shaking his head now, sayin this guy makes J.R.’s antics look lame.

  4. dko83 - Jan 2, 2013 at 1:29 AM

    Holy $#!*, 6 months for that?! Blows my mind. Guy needs to introduce Royce White (his future teammate over there) to that funky stuff, will help with the anxiety.

  5. fanofevilempire - Jan 2, 2013 at 7:12 AM

    I say the Chinese Basketball Association should roll a fat one and………………….

    imagine the Chinese drug dealer ……………………….


  6. captaincanoe - Jan 2, 2013 at 3:13 PM

    One thing that jumped out was a fine on the team also. Often thought USA Pro Leagues should do the same. Might make teams take some responsibility instead of just turning a blind eye.

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