On Friday, FIBA and Euroleague officials conspired to grant Juan Dixon surely one of the worst weekends in his life by announced that he was suspended from play with Unicaja Malaga thanks to his misuse of a steroid product.
In the statement from the Unicaja front office itself, club officials explained that Dixon had “tested positive for Nandrolone in a doping control conducted on 5 November in Thessaloniki, Greece.”
Basketball fans may recall nandrolone as the substance Rashard Lewis was busted for in August of this year and given a ten-game suspension.
The FIBA suspension will reportedly remain in place until that body makes an official decision on Dixon; though one wonders how severe the penalty could be when a seeming hardliner on drug use like Commissioner Stern only dealt a ten-game suspension. It seems Dixon’s wife Robyn Dixon is taking a few matters into her own hands, PR-wise. On Sunday, Robyn told press that Juan would be staying in Spain: “He is kind of in limbo. He is still under contract with the team. Until the team said it is severing ties, he probably needs to stay over there.”
As for Juan’s decision to play in Spain, Robyn said that “He definitely was not ready to go over there as far as his career, but he was appreciative of the opportunity and thought if he still can play his game he might have an opportunity to play in the NBA again.” (After an NBA career with five teams in seven seasons, the University of Maryland alum last tried to stick in the NBA with the Atlanta Hawks this summer before signing with Aris Thessaloniki.)
FIBA will be reexamining the sample and results of the test.
Robyn is also reportedly burning the midnight oil in trying to get the verdict overturned, doing research and publicly referring people to an article entitled “Knowing your supplements can help you avoid a positive nandrolone test.”
Offers this piece written by Dr. Donald Kirkendall:
So are athletes coming up positive because they are taking a “supplement,” or are they actually taking the banned substance nandrolone? What difference does it make? Both they and their team suffer.
The bottom line: No professional and Olympic athlete should take [19-norandrostenedione and 19-norandrostenediol (two popular over-the-counter 19-nor prohormones)], because their urine will test positive for nandrolone in as little as three days and for as long as 60 or more days. Here is a quote from a Web site selling these products: The product has a very long half life and should be discontinued at least 60 days prior to being drug tested.
Useful advice for the kids, one supposes.