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John Collins suspended: Positive GHRP-2 test brings 25-game suspension for Hawks star

John Collins of the Atlanta Hawks
John Collins has been suspended. Pic credit: Fox Sports South/YouTube

As of November 5, Atlanta Hawks big man John Collins has been suspended by the NBA. The former Wake Forest standout will be unable to play for 25 games due to violation of the league’s anti-doping policy.

Here are more details on Collins’ suspension for a positive GHRP-2 test as he becomes the latest NBA player to receive a lengthy ban from the court this season.

League suspends Collins, Hawks star to appeal

The Hawks’ rising star reportedly tested positive for GHRP-2, which violates the NBA and NBPA’s Anti-Drug Program. GHRP-2 is Growth Hormone Releasing Peptide-2.

According to a statement released from the league’s head office, he’ll start serving a 25-game suspension as of Tuesday night. The Atlanta Hawks will play the San Antonio Spurs without Collins, a player who has continued to show himself as a top contributor for a rising ATL team in the Eastern Conference.

Collins said he plans to appeal the 25-game suspension as part of an apologetic statement he made after the news arrived. Adrian Wojnarowski delivered Collins’ official statement to ESPN via Twitter.

In the statement, Collins not only apologizes to everyone from the Hawks organization and community but also mentions he “took a supplement, which unbeknownst to me, had been contaminated with an illegal component.”

Here are several tweets from Wojnarowski, which give Collins’ complete statement:

Atlanta Hawks president of basketball operations/general manager Travis Schlenk also issued a statement regarding the suspension.

“We hold ourselves and each of our players to a high standard, and we are committed to supporting John as he learns from this setback and continues to grow as both a player and a person,” Schlenk said in the statement, per ESPN. “Head Coach Lloyd Pierce and I have both talked to him, and we believe that he is truly remorseful for his actions. We will provide John with support on and off the court while we look forward to his return to the team.”

Collins is third player suspended for Anti-Drug Program violation this season

John Collins is the third NBA player to receive a 25-game suspension for a violation of the league’s Anti-Drug Program. Prior to the news of Collins’ suspension, the Phoenix Suns’ Deandre Ayton was suspended for a diuretic found in his system which is also a violation of the NBA/NBPA Anti-Drug Program. Diuretics are a violation as they can mask a player taking other banned substances.

In addition to Collins and Ayton, the Brooklyn Nets’ Wilson Chandler was also hit with a 25-game suspension. Chandler’s situation is somewhat similar to Collins’ in that his violation involved a drug called Ipamorelin to increase the release of growth hormone.

So far this season, the Hawks’ John Collins is averaging 17 points and leads in rebounding with 8.8 boards a game. The Hawks are currently sitting at 2-3 in the Eastern Conference standings. Although it’s early in the season, they appeared to be amongst legitimate contenders to make the playoffs in the East behind young rising stars Collins and Trae Young.

Now the team and fans will await any word of a suspension appeal in hopes for John Collins’ quicker return to the hardwood.

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