Ryan Malone pleads no contest to DUI charges; cocaine charges could be dismissed

Puck Daddy
Photo by Scott Audette/NHLI via Getty Images
Photo by Scott Audette/NHLI via Getty Images

Four months after he was arrested for driving under the influence and cocaine possession, Ryan Malone pled no contest to the DUI charges on Tuesday. He agreed to a pre-trial diversion program, which, without issue, would give him a clean record going forward.

From The Tampa Bay Times:

By accepting the pretrial intervention, his felony charge of cocaine possession will be dismissed if he successfully completes the program’s requirements – which are similar to those already outlined by the NHL.

As part of his DUI punishment, Malone will have his driver’s license suspended for six months and must complete 50 hours of community service.

After Malone's blood alcohol level was found to be at 0.112, the arresting officer discovered 1.3 grams of cocaine in the former Lightning forward's pocket. He explained he "was 'baffled' because he was wearing the same jeans for three days."

Tampa Bay used a compliance buyout on Malone in June and, according to the Times, "several" teams have expressed interest in the forward. But at 34, and after battling injuries the last two seasons, if he gets another shot at the NHL, he'll likely have to go the tryout route to make a comeback.

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Sean Leahy is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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