An NBA security official has filed a lawsuit alleging Geno Auriemma, the legendary Connecticut women's basketball coach who will lead the U.S. Olympic team this summer, retaliated against her for rejecting his advances by convincing the NBA to stop her from becoming the top security official for the women's basketball team at the London Olympics, the New York Times' Michael Powell reports. The lawsuit accuses the NBA, USA Basketball and Auriemma of employment discrimination.
Kelley Hardwick claims that in 2009, while she was working for the team in Russia, Auriemma followed her, grabbed her and tried to kiss her at the team's hotel. She stopped him and reported the incident but was willing to let it go, she said.
But this March, she said she was told that Auriemma had requested she not be a part of the security at the London Games. She reported her suspicions of retaliation to the NBA, which is part of USA Basketball, the organization that oversees the team. The league determined her removal was unrelated to Auriemma.
She subsequently filed her lawsuit.
"I was willing to close this story in 2009,” Hardwick told Powell in an interview. “If Geno had not interfered with my job and my livelihood, I would not have filed this lawsuit.” Auriemma and the NBA declined comment to Powell, and USA Basketball did not return calls for comment, Powell reported.