Cops probe Telfair incident
- Kerry Eggers
- Portland Tribune - Sports
Boston exec Danny Ainge was watching the Celtics' exhibition game in New York last week when he was approached by the team's security director with some strange information.
Police had contacted the security director about an incident the previous night involving guard Sebastian Telfair, who was allegedly robbed of a $50,000 gold chain while eating dinner in a Manhattan club owned by Sean 'Diddy' Combs.
Telfair, 21, says he was inside Justin's Bar and Grill with fiancée Samantha Rodriguez when he decided to walk outside. The former Trail Blazer told police an unknown man, part of a group, ripped the chain from his neck and ran off.
Later in the evening, rapper Fabolous was struck in a fusillade of at least 10 shots in a parking garage after having been in the same club. Fabolous was later stopped by police in his Dodge Magnum and charged with possession of two loaded handguns.
Police believed there may have been a connection between the people who stole Telfair's jewelry and those who shot the rapper. According to one report, police also wondered whether Telfair had summoned people for protection, and if they were the ones who did the shooting.
Telfair was pulled from the Celtics' game with the Knicks at halftime and driven to the police station to look at lineups and see if he could identify a suspect. Police would not confirm an ESPN.com report that members of Fabolous' entourage were included in the lineups.
A police source told the Boston Herald that Telfair became 'uncooperative' after telling cops he had been robbed. Meanwhile, team officials were upset Telfair hadn't told them about the robbery until just before the game the following night.
'I cooperated with police, and did what I had to do,' Telfair tells the Herald. 'I still have my life, and I'm still playing basketball, and that's all I can ask for. I was the victim of a bad situation. … It was 10 (p.m.), a pretty normal time to go out. If you want to say I'm a bad person because I was out eating with my fiancée, that's what it is.'
Last season, a loaded handgun was found in Telfair's pillowcase on the Blazers' private jet at Boston's Logan International Airport.
Telfair told authorities the gun belonged to Rodriguez and that he had inadvertently picked up the wrong bag before leaving for the team's road trip. The NBA meted him a two-game suspension for breaking a rule prohibiting players from carrying fire-arms while on league business.
'He's trying so hard to be a clean kid with no problems,' Boston coach Doc Rivers says of the latest incident. 'He said, 'I didn't do anything, and now I'm in the middle of this.' '
• Former Beaverton High standout Stuart Eagon is gearing up to help top-ranked Wisconsin win another Big Ten cross country championship Sunday at Bloomington, Ind.
Eagon, a sophomore who finished fourth in the Big Ten meet as a freshman, has been the Badgers' No. 2 runner thus far behind senior Chris Solinsky. Solinsky is the favorite to win the NCAA title.
'Chris and I will probably go out fast and hopefully will be able to take the top two spots,' Eagon says. 'The main goal is to make sure I don't get beat by anybody wearing a different jersey.
'My fitness has drastically improved over the last four weeks. I've improved so much more than during the same period last year.'
• Five years after becoming the first person with Down syndrome to swim the English Channel, Portland's Karen Gaffney became the first with the condition to swim from San Francisco to Alcatraz and back on Oct. 12.
Gaffney, 28, didn't just swim to the island - she also swam around it before heading to shore. Gaffney covered the four miles in two hours, 15 minutes despite some wind and rough tide over the final stretch.
'Frankly, it turned out to be easier than we thought,' says Jim Gaffney, Karen's father. 'She impressed the icons of San Francisco swimming. Swimming around Alcatraz is three times harder than just swimming from island to shore, but Karen had power to spare. She's incredible.'