Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross says former coach Brian Flores' allegations Ross pressured him to "tank" the season, or lose all its games so the team would be in a better position to obtain the first pick in the upcoming draft are "false, malicious, and defamatory."
Flores, who was fired last month, claims in a lawsuit that the Dolphins offered him $100,000 per loss. Flores is suing the Dolphins, the Denver Broncos, and the New York Giants, along with the NFL, over alleged racist hiring practices.
"With regards to the allegations being made by Brian Flores, I am a man of honor and integrity and cannot let them stand without responding," Ross said in a statement released Wednesday. "I take great personal exception to these malicious attacks, and the truth must be known. His allegations are false, malicious, and defamatory.
"We understand there are media reports stating the NFL intends to investigate his claims, and we will cooperate fully. I welcome the investigation, and I am eager to defend my personal integrity and the integrity of the entire Miami Dolphins organization, from these baseless, unfair, and disparaging claims."
A copy of the statement was tweeted out by Cameron Wolfe, a reporter for the NFL Network.
During a Tuesday interview on CNN, Flores was asked if Ross told him he would give the then-coach $100,000 for each game he would lose.
"Yes he did," Flores said. "That's not something you make up ... there were several conversations about, 'Take a vacation. We don't need to win right now. You're going to keep your job. You've signed a contract.'
"I've got a group of men in that locker room that I need to look them in the eye and ... let them know I'm helping them reach their potential, we're trying to win games. I was never going to stand for that. I would say that strained a lot of the relationships in Miami."
Flores maintains his refusal to accept the money eventually contributed to his dismissal.
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