When president of basketball operations Neil Olshey told reporters last month that the Trail Blazers investigated the sexual assault allegations levied in 1997 against new head coach Chauncey Billups and came away confident Billups hadn’t engaged in wrongdoing, he declined to offer any details on that inquiry. Olshey simply asked fans and the media to trust that the team had thoroughly investigated the situation.
However, a new report from Conrad Wilson and Tony Schick of Oregon Public Broadcasting calls into question just how exhaustive the Trail Blazers’ investigation was. According to Wilson and Schick, the attorney for Jane Doe in the Billups case said the Blazers didn’t contact her or her client.
“It’s news to us that they conducted an investigation,” attorney Margaret A. Burnham said.
The Blazers’ review didn’t obtain information directly from several primary sources, per the OPB’s report. That doesn’t necessarily meant the team’s conclusion about Billups’ involvement in the 1997 incident was inaccurate, but it suggests that the franchise may not have done everything it could to get the full story.
Whether the latest revelation results in any blowback for Olshey remains to be seen, Sean Highkin of Bleacher Report tweets. Either way, the fact that the story continues to create PR problems for the club doesn’t reflect well on the Blazers or their head of basketball operations.
Here’s more from around the Northwest: