Richard Jefferson Makes Fast Break From Altar

New Spurs forward head fakes marriage

By Josh Alper
|  Thursday, Jul 16, 2009  |  Updated 3:56 AM EDT
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Pro Athletes' Wives & Girlfriends

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Jefferson and Kesha Ni'cole Nichols were set to tie the knot on Saturday at the Mandarian Oriental Hotel in Manhattan but something happened.

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Throughout his NBA career, Richard Jefferson has made a name for himself as a finisher in the open court. He's not so keen on finishing things in his off-court life, a harsh lesson his fiancee learned shortly before they were to be married last weekend.

Jefferson and Kesha Ni'cole Nichols were set to tie the knot on Saturday at the Mandarian Oriental Hotel in Manhattan, but, according to the New York Post, Jefferson decided to call a timeout shortly before the ceremony. He didn't let his friends know, however, and just sent his best man and his Black Amex to take care of all his guests. In what may or may not be a statement of their opinion of Nichols, the crew partied the night away at the hotel while Nichols cooled her heels in one of their suites. 

 The Post quotes someone close to Nichols, a former Nets dancer, says that the bride-to-be wasn't caught "entirely off-guard" by Jefferson's decision to pass on her like a contested jump shot. Did former Nets teammate Jason Kidd's lack of marital bliss make Jefferson wary of actually going through with his intended plans? Could it be because his move to San Antonio offers an entirely new dance team to observe in hopes of finding a true soulmate?

Or did new teammate Tony Parker let him know that winning a ring in San Antonio opens the door to dating options not limited to on-court entertainers? While Eva Longoria surely loves him for more than his championship pedigree, there's no doubt that playing for the Spurs has cachet that one can't get while toiling for the Bucks.

There may even be reasons for the end of the relationship that have nothing at all to do with basketball, but Gregg Popovich should be happy to have a player who won't force a shot just because the shot clock is nearly at zero.

Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City and is a contributor to FanHouse.com and ProFootballTalk.com in addition to his duties for NBCNewYork.com.

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