Former Chicago Bulls guard Jay Williams, who played only one season in the NBA after a terrible motorcycle accident nearly cost him his life, recently made waves when he told the New York Times that some of his Bulls teammates use to smoke weed before games.
“I didn’t know how to handle it at first,” Williams said. “I didn’t know how to be around it. Guys were on the bench, trying to kick it to girls in the stands, having ball boys run over. I mean, some guys were high. There were guys smoking weed before games. Guys asking in the middle of the game, ‘Do you smell popcorn?’”
New York Knicks center Tyson Chandler, who played with Williams in Chicago during the 2002-2003 season, refuted the claim on Monday.
“Nah, I don’t know why he would say something like that,” Chandler told the NY Daily News. “I think that’s ridiculous that he would come out and say something like that,” Chandler went on. “I don’t remember that, to be honest with you. And, it’s just unfortunate that he would make that kind of statement about our team.”
Williams made the comments while speaking about what it was like to adjust to life in the NBA as a rookie. While we have no way of knowing if he was being truthful, we do know that he is a college basketball analyst for ESPN. Oftentimes former players who have nothing going for them will make ridiculous claims just to get some attention, but Williams has more going for him than the average NBA player whose career was not very long.
Whether the Bulls were or were not smoking weed before games 10 years ago really doesn’t matter at this point. As this former pitcher and this former offensive lineman would tell you, they wouldn’t be the first professional athletes to play high. It’s not as if the team can be punished for it in any way, so it’s nothing more than an entertaining narrative.