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Jay Williams: Some Bulls Teammates Were ‘Smoking Weed Before Games’

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Jay Williams in April of 2003. (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

Jay Williams in April of 2003. (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

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(CBS) Over the weekend, the New York Times published a fascinating feature story on former Bulls guard Jay Williams, who saw his basketball career end prematurely 10 years ago after a motorcycle accident.

Buried in the story, however, was a revelation that some of his teammates on the 2002-03 Bulls smoked marijuana before games. The excerpt quoting Williams, who spoke about his struggle to adapt to the NBA lifestyle during his one and only season in the league, read:

“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.”

Asked to clarify, Williams said: “There were guys smoking weed before games. Guys asking in the middle of the game, ‘Do you smell popcorn?’ ”

He noticed the nervous laughter around the kitchen table. “You think I’m playing,” Williams said. “Can you imagine! Guys are gambling. They’re playing dice in the back of the plane for money. Like, we just lost by 30 tonight! And we’ve got a game tomorrow! It bugged me out.”

The motorcycle accident in June of 2003 effectively ended his career. Williams resurfaced in the NBDL briefly in 2006, but that was as close to a comeback as he came.

 

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