NBA Suspends Arnett Moultrie For Drug Violation

The NBA has suspended Sixers power forward Arnett Moultrie five games for violating the league’s anti-drug policy, the league announced via press release. The 27th overall pick in the 2012 draft will go without pay for the five games, costing him $32,036 of his $1,089,240 salary for this season. He’s been on D-League assignment since March 15th, but he’ll be unable to play for either Philadelphia’s D-League affiliate or the Sixers until the Sixers complete their game against the Raptors on April 9th.

The suspension isn’t for any performance-enhancing drug, since the league program for such a violation mandates a 20-game suspension on the first offense. The NBA’s penalty structure suggests that it’s marijuana-related, though the league hasn’t specified the nature of the violation.

The Sixers have already picked up his 2014/15 option, worth $1,136,160, for 2014/15, but GM Sam Hinkie, armed with significant cap room, has shown little fear of waiving guaranteed contracts. Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News doesn’t envision Moultrie remaining with the team into next season (Twitter link).

Injuries have hampered the former Mississippi State Bulldog, who’s averaged just 3.6 points in 12.4 minutes per game over 59 NBA contests. The Heat originally drafted him, trading him to the Sixers in part for a first-round pick that Miami traded once more to the Celtics earlier this year. Still, the protections on the pick make it more likely that Moultrie will only end up costing the Sixers a pair of second-round picks instead of a first-rounder.

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