Theo Czubakowski said he was coaching a game on Sunday at Next Level Sports Center in Huntington Station when a mother of one of his players got mad at him for putting her son on the bench.
“His mom, after about five or six minutes and we’re down 20, now she’s yelling at me, ‘Put him in the game,'” Czubakowski told Eyewitness News reporter Kristin Thorne. “And then she starts to swear.”
Czubakowski said he told the mother to calm down and if she didn’t, she should leave.
“Then she heads for court,” Czubakowski said.
Czubakowski shared a cell phone video with Eyewitness News of a spectator in the stands, which shows a crowd of people around Czubakowski.
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Suffolk County Police said they were using the video as part of the investigation.
Czubakowski said a man, a relative of the player who was on the bench, was the first to punch him in the right side of the head.
“I fell to the ground,” he said. “I was completely beside myself.”
Czubakowski said that’s when more men punched and kicked him in the head. He said he didn’t defend himself because he was too stunned.
Cell phone video shows Czubakowski stumbling out of the gym.
“They chased me away,” he said. “I got to my car. I was in my car trying to close the door. They put me in my car, they beat me in my car and then they tried to get me out. of my car by the feet, so I grabbed the steering wheel trying to hold myself back and pull myself back into the car. “
Czubakowski said one of his players managed to close the car door and Czubakowski drove off. He later returned and called the police.
He was taken to Huntington Hospital and said he suffered a concussion and some of his injuries will require dental treatment, bruised jaw.
Czubakowski said the men involved are family members of the player he placed on the bench and the player tried to stop his family members from attacking Czubakowski.
“It’s not his fault,” Czubakowski said. “He was trying to hold them back.
Czubakowski founded the Ghost Elite Basketball League in 2014 to provide financially troubled children the opportunity to play basketball. He has held clinics and tournaments across Long Island, and he currently coaches four teams.
“It kills me to think I’m trying to help people and then, you know, it happens,” he said.
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Czubakowski said he was forced to remove this player from his squad because he couldn’t risk the men involved showing up again at a game.
Suffolk Police have released a photo of at least one of the men allegedly involved.
Anyone with information is asked to call Suffolk County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.
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