Domestic Assault: NBA Player Jeffrey Taylor Suspended for 24 Games

Jeffrey Taylor Charlotte Hornets shoots ball

It was announced this week that Swedish-American NBA player Jeffery Taylor would be suspended, without pay, for 24 games after he pleaded guilty to domestic assault.

The assault occurred on September 25, when the 24 year-old Taylor was witnessed violently shoving and hitting his girlfriend outside a hotel in East Lansing, Michigan. The Charlotte Hornets’ forward was sentenced to 18 months of probation and will need to attend a 26-week domestic violence intervention program to avoid a prison sentence. The ban, which will include the 11 games Taylor has already missed due to the ongoing investigation, will mean that he will miss around a quarter of the scheduled games for this season.

A Sting for the Charlotte Hornets

Taylor’s suspension is a blow for the Charlotte Hornets as they head into this week’s game against the Portland Trail Blazers. The team presently has odds of 10/11 to beat their opponents according to bet365, a popular sports betting website that is endorsed by regulated online gambling organization.

Taylor, who scored a career high 16 points in the Hornets’ 91-101 loss to the Atlanta Hawks in 2012, is know for his superb defensive play and ability to defend every area of the floor. Since joining the Hornets in 2012, where he was the 31st overall pick in the 2012 NBA draft, Taylor has proved to be a solid asset to the North Carolina-based team. During his time with the Bobcats, Taylor has averaged 8.0 points and 2.3 rebounds in 23.2 minutes per game. It is this type of impressive stats which show how much Taylor’s contribution to play will be missed in this week’s contest.

‘A Most Pleasant Surprise’

Taylor first came to the attention of basketball fans when he was singled out by DraftExpress.com as ‘one of the most pleasant surprises in last season’s mediocre Southeastern Conference.’ At this time the Norrköping native was playing college basketball for Vanderbilt University and impressed critics with his average 12.2 points and 6.2 rebounds on his journey to SEC All-Freshman honours.

However, his sophomore season failed to completely build upon his successful Freshman campaign. Whilst Taylor slightly improved his scoring average to 13.3 per game, he continued to have issues with his perimeter shooting. He only attempted 11 three-pointers all season, of which he only made one. However, despite some voicing their concern that the Norwegian native’s game was simultaneously progressing and regressing, he was named to the SEC All defence team.

A Rise to the Top…

It was between 2010 and 2011 that Taylor’s talents really began to mature. Whilst his reputation as an excellent defensive stopper continued to rise, he also improved his previously shaky three-point shooting to a respectable 34.5%.

Whilst critics commented that Taylor could potentially go for early entry into the NBA Draft, he decided to stay at Vanderbilt for his senior year. This decision did not prove detrimental to the young star as he was signed by the Bobcats on July 13, 2012.

 …and a Sudden Drop

Taylor’s NBA career progressed well until this year. Despite a tear to his right Achilles tendon in December 2013 sidelining him for the remainder of that season, the 24-year old continued to post consistent results and backed up his college reputation as a spectacular defender.

His conviction of domestic assault is not only a blemish on his personal life but also on his professional career.

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