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NBA

Pelicans' Louzada faces heavy suspension for failed drugs test

The guard is set to be out for a number of games and will do so without pay.

Update:
New Orleans Pelicans' guard Didi Louzada is unfortunately set to face a 25 game suspension without pay after he failed a league mandated drug test.

Having failed a league mandated drugs test the Pelican player finds himself on the receiving end of a heavy sanction from the NBA

Pelicans' Louzada to face lengthy suspension

New Orleans Pelicans guard Didi Louzada is set to face a hefty suspension after failing a drugs test. Louzada will have to sit out 25 games without pay after violating the NBA/NBPA's anti-drug program. It is understood that he tested positive for both drostanolone and testosterone.

Louzada gives his side

Speaking on the situation Louzada, who is 22 referred to a trip back to his home country of Brazil. During the trip he met with a nutritionist who was recommended to him and claims that based on the consultancy he consumed various products and in turn unknowingly ingested the banned substances.

"When I was in Brazil during the offseason, I consulted a nutritionist who recommended I take some vitamins and supplements," Louzada stated. "Because she has a history of working with professional athletes, I would never have imagined that any of those substances would be banned or could be contaminated. Once I learned of the positive test, I immediately cooperatedcompletely with the league and union to help all of us understand what exactly occurred."

"...I would never knowingly take anything that violates NBA rules. I accept my responsibility in this situation. I deeply regret that this happened and I apologize to my team, my teammates, and Pelicans fans for this mistake."

For more from the NBA

Where do the Pelicans and Louzada go from here?

In 2019 the Pelicans drafter Louzada as the 35th pick. Incidentally it was the draft in which they acquired star Zion Williamson. Louzada himself was actually part of the deal that sent the No. 4 pick to Atlanta in which New Orleans got Jaxson Hayes and Nickeil Alexander-Walker. Speaking on the the unfortunate turn of events, David Griffin, Pelicans executive vice president was clear but supportive. "On behalf of the New Orleans Pelicans organization, we were disappointed to learn that Didi Louzada violated the NBA/NBPA Anti-Drug Program. After speaking with Didi, we are confident that he understands the full gravity of the situation and regrets the decisions that led to the suspension. We fully support Didi on and off the court as he learns and grows from this experience."

Previously Louzada had played two seasons with the Sydney Kings in the NBL before the Pelicans acquired him in April of last season. In the off season Louzada managed to secure himself a multiyear contract and was currently coming into his 6th game with the Pelicans when the new broke.

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