Bengals LB Rey Maualuga pleaded not guilty Friday on a misdemeanor assault charge stemming from an incident at a downtown Cincinnati bar, in which he reportedly punched Luxe Bar manager Sammy Laham in the face.
Maualuga's attorney filed a written plea at the arraignment of the three-year pro Friday at Hamilton County (Ohio) Municipal Court.
Neither Maualuga nor the Bengals have commented on the charge. Since it is Maualuga's second brush with the law, after he pleaded guilty to a drunken-driving incident that occurred in January 2010, the linebacker could face suspension for part of the 2012 season.
He posted a career-high 88 tackles in just 13 games last season and has started 43 games since the Bengals selected him in the second round of the 2009 NFL draft.