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Hawks Suspend Late Rider

Associated Press

The Atlanta Hawks suspended guard Isaiah Rider indefinitely Thursday after he missed a team flight and a shootaround before their game at Detroit.

Team spokesman Arthur Triche said Rider would be out at least two games.

Rider showed up at the Palace of Auburn Hills about an hour before the game and was involved in a players-only meeting in the Hawks’ locker room. The Hawks said Rider hadn’t contacted the team all day.

He then spoke to the media, refusing to explain his absence from the shootaround, and left the arena. The Hawks banned him from the team’s charter flight back to Atlanta and told him to fly commercially.

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“J.R. didn’t come here to lose or accept a losing mentality,” Rider said after the team meeting. “I think they understood. They feel my pain, they don’t think I’m rebelling. They just know I want to win.”

A day earlier, Rider ripped his teammates after their 116-89 loss to the Indiana Pacers in Atlanta. He then missed the team’s 6 p.m. charter flight to Detroit.

Rider said he arrived at the airport five minutes late and drove up to the plane as it pulled away.

Rider was also suspended after he missed practice the day before a Nov. 18 game against Charlotte, saying his car had been vandalized.

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Minnesota put guard Bobby Jackson and forward Wally Szczerbiak on the injured list, both with right knee injuries. Neither player has been replaced on the active roster and both can return at any time.


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