Blazers head coach Maurice Cheeks said Darius Miles hurled racial slurs at him “at least 20 times” and told the coach he didn’t like him during their heated confrontation before Thursday’s practice, which resulted in the Trail Blazers’ suspending the 23-year-old forward for two games.
The confrontation flared when the Cheeks continued a line of criticism directed at Miles during the team’s review of Wednesday’s game with Dallas. The argument escalated when neither party would back down, and accounts of the argument include Miles telling Cheeks he was going to be fired, and when Cheeks told Miles to leave, Miles said that Cheeks would have to call the police to make him leave the building.
Several players said the incident will blow over, and won’t create a divide among pro-Cheeks and pro-Miles camps. They all said they were a team, and would remain a team.
“We support Cheeks 100 percent and the same with Darius,” center Joel Przybilla said. “It was just an instance of two guys having different views. I have seen worse. I was in Milwaukee with Anthony Mason, and this was nothing. We just need to move on. Shoot, we are already past it. As soon as Darius is back, we will be waiting for him.”
The situation continued when Cheeks dismissed the team and began leaving toward general manager John Nash’s office, when Miles chided him with the comment, “That’s right, run to your daddy.” When Cheeks did go to Nash’s office, Miles burst in, and another argument ensued.
(Portland’s Theo Ratliff blocking LA’s Elton Brand, Friday night at the Rose Garden)
Led by a 22 points from Damon Stoudamire, the Blazers won the first of Miles’ two suspended games on Friday night, beating the Clippers, 90-86.