Spanos Says Muncie Won't Play for Chargers Again; Attorney Puzzled by Owner's Stance

Times Staff Writer

Chuck Muncie's attorney said Thursday that he expects a clean bill of health for the San Diego Chargers running back and does not understand why owner Alex Spanos announced that Muncie will never again play for his team.

Keith Klevan said his client has satisfactorily complied with an after-care program for cocaine addiction, as directed by National Football League Commissioner Pete Rozelle.

Spanos, however, stuck by a statement he made Wednesday night, indicating Muncie was through as a Charger.

"Chuck is in the league's hands now," Spanos said by phone Thursday from Kansas City. "He's a sick man. I've been taking care of him, but I'm through with him now.

"He won't ever play for the Chargers again, even if he (Rozelle) lifts the suspension."

In Los Angeles, Klevan said he had not spoken to Spanos and was uncertain if he would make any form of appeal to Rozelle.

"I don't understand the basis for (Spanos') statement," Klevan said. "Based on my conversations with Chuck's therapist, he is doing well, and we expect a favorable decision from the commissioner on resuming his career."

Muncie was suspended last November. The Chargers attempted to trade him to Miami, but the trade was voided after Muncie failed a urinalysis administered by the Dolphins.

Muncie then entered an Arizona drug rehabilitation center, where he remained for about one month. On Nov. 15, Rozelle suspended him indefinitely, pending a review of his case this spring. Muncie was directed to submit to mandatory, random urinalysis tests as part of the terms set by Rozelle.

An NFL spokesman said the league is awaiting an updated report from Muncie's doctors and would have no further comment.

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