NBA Suspends Cavs Center For 1 Game

By TOM WITHERS, AP Sports Writer

CLEVELAND (AP) - Cavaliers center Zydrunas Ilgauskas was suspended by the NBA for one game on Monday after being arrested last month for drunken driving.

Ilgauskas (pictured, right) will be suspended without pay and will miss the regular-season opener on Oct. 29 in Sacramento, the league said.

Cavs coach John Lucas also will miss the game against the Kings.

In May, the league suspended Lucas for two games for including LeBron James, the nation's top high school player, in a voluntary workout for Cavs players at Gund Arena.

"It's unfortunate to have both John and 'Z' out, but that's the way it is," general manager Jim Paxson said. "We're adults so we accept the consequences, move on and hopefully learn from it."

Last week, the 7-foot-3 Ilgauskas pleaded no contest to drunken driving and was sentenced to one year's probation. A 30-day jail sentence was suspended and Ilgauskas was fined $1,000.

The 27-year-old Ilgauskas, whose career has been slowed by foot injuries, was stopped in suburban Cleveland on Sept. 15 for erratic driving.

He failed field sobriety tests, and his blood-alcohol level was 0.167 -- above Ohio's legal limit of 0.10.

Lucas and teammates Tyrone Hill and Bimbo Coles spoke on Ilgauskas' behalf in court.

Lucas told a judge that Ilgauskas would undergo drug and alcohol counseling through the Cavs' organization.

Ilgauskas also had his driver's license suspended for a year, and he is only allowed to drive to work, counseling sessions and the grocery store.

Ilgauskas played in 62 games last season, averaging 11.1 points and 5.4 rebounds. He had been limited to 29 games in the previous three seasons after undergoing reconstructive surgery on both feet.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)