Former Spectrum SportsNet reporter Kelli Tennant says that Luke Walton assaulted her in a hotel at Santa Monica, California
By Nicole Ganglani | Photo from NBA
The former Lakers head coach Luke Walton is rumoured to have sexually abused his co-league Kelli Tennant.
Luke Walton and Tennant both worked together as sports correspondents for Time Warner SportsNet (now Spectrum SportsNet) before the former became the assistant head coach of the Golden State Warriors. Tennant stated that Walton was a huge part of the book she wrote about athletes transitioning to the real world.
Tennant mentioned that Walton asked her to come up to his hotel room to deliver her book for which the coach wrote a foreword. Tennant said that while in the room, Walton pinned her down to the bed and then placed his hips, erection, and legs all over her body.
“Out of nowhere, he got on top of me and pinned me down to the bed, and held my arms down with all of his weight while he kissed my neck and my face and my chest. And as I kept asking him to please stop, to get off, he laughed at me,” said Tennant.
The incident took place in 2014 when the Warriors were in Los Angeles. Walton insisted that Tennant meet him in his room and deliver the book.
“I continued to ask him to stop, over and over again, without any use of my arms, because he continued to hold me down. I could feel him rubbing his erection on me … and he continued to laugh at all of my pleas to get off. I thought he was going to rape me,” Tennant added.
Tennant claims that Walton eventually stopped and let her go but as she was rushing out of his hotel, Walton grabbed her from behind and again forced his body up against hers.
“He smiled, laughed again and made the disturbing statement, ‘Good to see you,'” Tennant claimed in her suit.
Walton has yet to speak about the incident but did deny the accusations through his lawyer, Mark Baute.
The former Los Angeles Laker head coach finished the latest NBA season on a disappointing note after not being able to make it to the playoffs for the third straight year. Walton stepped down as the Lakers’ coach just last month and is now with the Sacramento Kings.