Former Paterson Eastside Assistant Maldonado ‘Stunned’ by Allegations; Pete Vasil Not Approved as Volunteer Coach
CLIFTON, N.J. — Former Eastside High School assistant basketball coach Al Maldonado said he was “shocked” and “stunned” at the allegations against himself and suspended head coach Juan Griles that emerged from this week’s explosive NJ Advance Media report.
In an exclusive interview with SNY in his attorney’s office on Wednesday afternoon, Maldonado, 54, spoke frankly and also broke down in tears as he discussed the report that six Eastside players were living with Griles in his Paterson condo.
“I was shocked,” Maldonado, who wore an orange and blue tie to honor the Ghosts’ colors, said in an interview that will air later Wednesday on SNY’s Geico SportsNite. “I know what Coach Griles is about, I know what I’m about. Without getting into too much detail, some of the allegations that I [saw] in that article stunned me. In my opinion, [there was] a little bit of sensationalism. But my initial reaction was shock.”
Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.