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Luke Walton Lawyer Claims Innocence 'Accuser Is An Opportunist'

4/23/2019 5:51 AM PDT
Breaking News

Luke Walton has lawyered up in his sexual battery case -- and now the NBA coach and his attorney are blasting his accuser as a lying "opportunist."

TMZ Sports broke the story ... sports reporter Kelli Tennant is suing the Sacramento Kings head coach claiming he sexually assaulted her back when he was an assistant with the Golden State Warriors. 

Now, Walton has hired attorney Mark Baute, who issued a fiery statement slamming Tennant's allegations. 

"Luke Walton retained me to defend him against these baseless allegations," Baute said. 

"The accuser is an opportunist, not a victim, & her claim is not credible. We intend to prove this in a courtroom."

In the suit, Tennant says Walton tried to force himself on her in a Santa Monica hotel room -- but she was able to escape. 

The Warriors say they had no knowledge of the alleged incident during Walton's employment. Same with the Lakers and the Kings. 

We spoke with Shannon Sharpe about the situation -- and reiterated the importance of withholding judgment until we hear both sides.  

NBA's Ben McLemore Kneeling NFL Players ... Not Representing America

8/26/2018 12:30 AM PDT

Ben McLemore has strong words for kneeling NFL players ... telling TMZ Sports they're not only disrespecting the nation -- but their message is getting lost in the controversy too!!

The Sacramento Kings guard opened up about the issue outside of Avenue in Hollywood ... saying he believes NFL players should follow the NBA's lead -- and stop kneeling during the anthem.

"You should always represent our nation," Ben says. "That's how I feel. I think you always should."

McLemore also says NBA players are fighting social injustice the right way ... and appears set to give a lengthy explanation on why -- but the dude gets yanked into his car by some friends!!

Next time, Ben. Next time.

Lil Wayne's Agency Sues NBA's Frank Mason Gimme Back My Diamond Chain!

8/8/2018 12:10 AM PDT

Lil Wayne wants his bling, bling back -- claiming NBA player Frank Mason ditched his Young Money sports agency ... and refuses to give back his YM chain. 

Backstory ... Mason signed to Weezy's Young Money APAA Sports Group back in April 2017 ... right before the NBA Draft (he was selected in the 2nd round by the Sacramento Kings). 

As part of the deal, YM says it advanced Mason $40,000, agreed to pay his pre-draft expenses (totaling $52k) and hooked him up with an $11,000 diamond Young Money chain. Pretty standard stuff.

The catch, YM says Mason's contract stated that if he ever left the agency, he had to repay the money and give back his jewelry.  

Well, in April 2018 -- toward the end of Mason's rookie season -- Mason fired Young Money "at the urging of a former YM employee" but never gave back the stuff, according to a lawsuit obtained by TMZ Sports

Now, Young Money is asking the judge to force Mason's hand -- demanding $92k in cash plus the chain PLUS damages. 

FYI, Mason's NBA contract isn't super rich -- he only made $1.3 mil last season and will make similar money for the next 2 years. 

What's interesting, Mason appeared on the "TMZ Sports" TV show right after he signed with Young Money and told the guys why he was pumped to be in business with Lil Wayne. 

No word on what changed after the interview ... 

Iman Shumpert Hilarious Carmelo Hazing Tale ... Involving Skittles

7/12/2018 3:07 PM PDT

Rookies on Carmelo Anthony's next team -- watch out ... 'cause dude has ZERO CHILL when it comes to the hazing game, so says Iman Shumpert.

We got Iman out in NYC -- where he was in full-on pitch mode for his wifey's new album and gear -- when the topic of how he was going to initiate his new Kings teammate, Marvin Bagley III, to the NBA came up.

Iman seemed timid to the idea ... and when we pressed why -- it turns out Shump was actually the victim of a heinous Melo hazing incident back in his rookie year with the Knicks.

Iman tells us Carmelo made him build out a bowl of entirely green Skittles -- and Shumpert still seems shook by it all.

"What pack do you know of all green Skittles!?" he says.

The worst part of the whole episode?

"I don't even think he ate them."

BONUS: Iman gave us his rendition of one of Teyana Taylor's new songs ... and let's just say she's the better singer in the couple.

Willie Cauley-Stein LeBron's Coming to Lakers

6/25/2018 8:02 AM PDT

At least one NBA star is convinced LeBron James has already made up his mind ... with Willie Cauley-Stein telling TMZ Sports the King is coming to L.A. 

"He's coming HERE," the Sacramento Kings star told us outside Nightingale Plaza nightclub in L.A. 

He also noted that there's no loyalty in the NBA, so anything is on the table when it comes to players and teams making moves

By the way, Willie is DRIPPIN' in this clip -- with a Gucci bandana around his head, all sorts of diamonds around his neck and a Louis Vuitton x Supreme side bag around his chest. 

Willie is toward the end of a 4-year, $15 million contract ... and will probably sign a huge deal moving forward -- so, why not spend if you're gonna get it?!

Sacramento Kings Game Delayed By BLM Protest ... Over Killing Of Unarmed Man

3/23/2018 6:51 AM PDT

Thursday's Sacramento Kings game was delayed by protesters who formed a human chain in front of Golden 1 Center in Sacramento to protest a police killing of an unarmed black man.

The Kings were set to take on the Atlanta Hawks, but the game got off to a late start as police dealt with the protest which included protesters locking arms and chanting "Black Lives Matter."

The demonstration was in response to the death of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento man shot over 20 times by police in his backyard when Sacramento police mistook his cell phone for a gun.

Protesters eventually dispersed peacefully, with no arrests made, and Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé came out to address the arena crowd after the game was played. 

"We at the Kings recognize people's ability to protest peacefully and we respect that," he said. "We here at the Kings recognize that we have a big platform. It's a privilege, but it's also a responsibility. It's a responsibility that we take very seriously. And we stand here before you -- old, young, black, white, brown -- and we are all united in our commitment."

Iman Shumpert My Wife Works For Kanye Helped My Rap Career 0%

2/26/2018 12:35 AM PST

Iman Shumpert says just because his wife is down with G.O.O.D. music, it doesn't mean he is ... telling TMZ Sports he's never even gotten so much as a beat from his boss-in-law, Kanye West.

Shumpert is a pretty serious rapper himself, having released his Mixtape "Shumpman: The MD" back in 2016, and continuing to flood social media with new verses on the regular.

We got Iman at LAX, and asked him if his wife's label boss, Kanye West, has ever given Shump any help AT ALL in his rap career ... and here's a shocker, it's never happened.

Iman says he's never asked ... not outright at least ... however we did find a recent freestyle he dropped over Kanye's "Grammy Family" beat (and he killed it), so we gotta ask ...

Is it time for an addition to the G.O.O.D. family?

Zach Randolph I Was 'Wrongfully Arrested'

9/26/2017 8:47 AM PDT
Breaking News

Zach Randolph says he feels he was "wrongfully arrested" during an August 9 incident in Los Angeles -- in which cops initially said the NBA star was in possession of a TON of weed. 

TMZ Sports broke the story ... Randolph was initially arrested for possession with intent to sell because of the large quantity of weed cops say he had. He eventually pled no contest to resisting arrest and the weed charge was dismissed completely. 

Randolph finally broke his silence about the situation on Monday telling reporters, "I'm not speaking a lot about it but I felt that I was wrongfully arrested."

"Things that was put out there wasn't true. But I don't want to be a distraction to my team, my organization, so I'm just going to move forward and play basketball."

Randolph was sentenced to 150 hours of community service and was ordered to stay away from drug dealers. He's due back in court in December. 

NBA's Zach Randolph Cuts Deal In Weed Case ... No Jail Time

9/13/2017 3:35 PM PDT

Sacramento Kings star Zach Randolph just struck a pretty sweet deal in his marijuana case ... and all he has to do is a TON of community service. 

TMZ Sports broke the story ... Z-Bo was arrested for felony weed possession with intent to sell back in August when cops say they busted him with more than 2 pounds of pot in Nickerson Gardens. 

The charges were later reduced to misdemeanor possession of more than 1 ounce of marijuana and resisting arrest ... and Randolph was facing up to 1 year in jail if convicted on both accounts.

But now, we've learned Randolph struck a deal with prosecutors to plead no contest to misdemeanor resisting arrest ... and in exchange, the pot charge was tossed completely. 

Randolph was sentenced to 150 hours of community service as part of a diversion program, which means if he completes the hours and keeps his nose clean for 12 months, the resisting arrest conviction will be wiped from his record.

One more thing ... Randolph was specifically told he may not associate himself with or be around drug dealers as part of the terms of the deal.

The case is due back in court for a progress report in December. Good luck! 

Ex-Sacramento Kings Owner: I Never Woulda Traded DeMarcus Cousins!

5/17/2017 12:45 AM PDT

The Sacramento Kings made a tremendous mistake getting rid of DeMarcus Cousins and it's gonna take 'em a long time to recover ... so says the team's former owner Gavin Maloof

Maloof -- who co-owned the Kings with his brothers until 2013 -- was in L.A. with his GF, Katherine, when we asked if he would have pulled the trigger to ship Boogie to New Orleans if he was still in charge. 

"No. No way ... No way ... No way."

Maloof said time will tell if the team made the right call -- but points out they "didn't get much in return" for Cousins and predicts, "It's gonna take 'em a long time to rebuild."

There's more ... Maloof has moved on to owning another pro sports team -- the Las Vegas Golden Knights, the new NHL expansion team. 

He's pumped about sharing the town with the Raiders but explains why moving an NBA team to Sin City would be a mistake.

NBA's Ty Lawson Allegedly Violates Probation ... Warrant Requested

3/7/2017 1:36 PM PST

Ty Lawson has some serious explaining to do ... because officials in Denver believe the Sacramento Kings star violated his probation and are gunning for a warrant, TMZ Sports has learned. 

Lawson is currently on probation stemming from his 2015 drunk driving case in Denver -- but the Denver Probation Dept. has filed a complaint seeking to revoke his probation citing a potential violation. 

Officials would not say what the alleged violation is ... but confirmed to TMZ Sports that a bench warrant has been requested so they can bring Lawson to court for a hearing on the matter. 

We're told a judge has not signed off on the warrant at this point. 

Some of the requirements of Lawson's probation -- which was scheduled to end on March 22 -- included monitored sobriety, 48 hours of community service, 52 hours of therapy and no marijuana use. 

We reached out to Lawson's camp -- so far, no word back. 

DeMarcus Cousins Emotional Goodbye Speech 'Love For City Will Never Change'

2/21/2017 6:00 AM PST
Breaking News

DeMarcus Cousins fought back tears as he delivered an emotional goodbye message to Sacramento last night ... just 1 day after he was traded to New Orleans. 

"My love for this city will never change," Cousins said at a going-away dinner in Sacramento on Monday.

"Even though I’m gone it’ll still be the same. I’m still looking out for these kids. Every family in this city matters to me."

"Every soul in this city matters to me. Everything’s the same. I’m just not in a Kings uniform anymore, which is OK because the love is still here."

Cousins played for the Sacramento Kings for 7 seasons before being traded to the Pelicans on Sunday.

Matt Barnes Surrenders to Cops In NY Club Brawl Case

2/1/2017 10:09 AM PST
Breaking News

Matt Barnes turned himself in to police Wednesday to face an assault charge stemming from a NYC nightclub brawl back in December ... law enforcement confirms. 

Barnes was cited for misdemeanor assault for allegedly getting violent with a woman at Avenue nightclub in the early hours of Dec. 5th. The NY Post first reported Barnes' surrender. 

TMZ Sports broke the story ... Barnes claimed he was merely defending himself when all hell broke loose inside. The alleged victim claims Barnes choked her. 

Barnes was at the club with his Sacramento Kings teammate, DeMarcus Cousins, that night. He was not charged with a crime. 

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