Nelson reinstated to UCLA basketball team

UCLA forward Reeves Nelson wasn’t gone for long, but he was sure missed while he was gone.

The enigmatic junior was reinstated to the basketball team on Wednesday, head coach Ben Howland announced, and will rejoin the team for practice on Thursday, as the Bruins took Wednesday off following an 86-66 loss to Middle Tennessee State on Tuesday at the Los Angeles Sports Arena.

Nelson was suspended for “conduct unbecoming of a member of the UCLA team” on Monday after displaying poor attitude during and after the team’s season-opening 69-58 loss to Loyola Marymount on Friday.

“After much deliberation, I have decided to reinstate Reeves Nelson,” Howland said in a statement. “Reeves understands that his reinstatement is contingent on his ability to continually meet the high standards we have established for all UCLA men’s basketball players. He expressed to me in our meeting earlier today that he desires to be a better person and better teammate going forward, and, given that, I feel as though I should give him that opportunity.”

Nelson, the team’s leading returning scorer and rebounder from a year ago, had 13 points and eight rebounds against the Lions, but grew frustrated with the lack of attention going his way. Nelson and Howland spoke at length on Monday and Wednesday and came to an agreement that led to the quick return.

“I acknowledge there are corrections that need to be made and I’m grateful to Coach Howland to have this opportunity to improve and work on being a positive force for our team,” said Nelson. “I appreciate the support of my teammates and will be there for them as we move forward.”

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  • Semi-Pro

    Glad to hear Reeves pulled his head out of his backside.

  • EDD CHINA

    Can Reeves play PG?

  • spedjones

    funny what a 20-point loss will do…

  • niurBALCU

    Reeves should tweet a THX U! to MTSU’s basketball program for his speedy return.

  • Bum Howland

    I am also pleased to announce that I will be hiring a coach to handle the offense for me. He has experience in the pros and implemented a prolific (at least by my standards) and innovative system in his last role. He will not be available until December; please help me welcome… RICK NEUHEISEL!!

  • bzo

    The loss has absolutely nothing to do with it. Reeves is emotional and will do dumb things out of frustration, but he’s not stupid.

  • Blitzed

    What exactly are those “high standards” anymore? He’s got attitude issues, Smith runs his mouth on Twitter and all the while we are getting rolled by mid majors at home.

    Is it baseball season yet?

  • Anonymous

    Guy should hire Artest’s psychiatrist.

  • Bruin fan, I guess

    “After much deliberation (i.e. watching film of last night’s game) I decided to reinstate Reeves to save my ass, uh, I mean, to show him that UCLA is committed to giving someone a second chance, especially if that someone is the only one who can shoot. Reeves understands that his reinstatement is contingent on his ability to meet the high standards established for all UCLA basketball players, and contingent on him shooting at least 33% from behind the arc. He expressed to me in our meeting that he desires to be a better person and better teammate going forward, and that no other Division 1 program will have him, and, given that, I feel as though I should give him that opportunity.” – Ben “On Thin Ice” Howland

  • BE REAL

    The unofficial statements:

    Coach: I can’t stand this kid, but I need him to hold on to my job. Besides, he doesn’t riot like the football guys, so by those ucla standards Reeves ain’t all that bad. I guess.

    Reeves: How many ways can you say ‘pain in the behind.’ And calling the guy ‘anal’ ain’t half the truth. But I got to get me a pro contract ’cause who else would hire me after I get outta this joint.

  • Iowa Bruin

    “…meet the high standards we have established for all UCLA men’s basketball…”

    I have a “high standard” for you – how about winning a game against vastly inferior opponents! That is a high standard I can get behind.

  • Iowa Bruin

    Maybe Nelson is the only player that really cares about winning? I know that is not true and we have great athletics, but we have to play like it and that starts at the top.

    Look, we have the talent to win. This is bad on a whole new level of bad.

    Go Bruins!

  • Anonymous

    Iowa Bruin- Just my thoughts exactly. The “high standards at UCLA” are to win and win consistently. Unfortunately, Howland is not doing that lately. He needs to be on the “Hotseat” and let go if he can’t perform. Hey Guerrero, these are your hires so you are just as responsible.