LeBron James and Isaiah Stewart are now each suspended following a bloody grapple during the Los Angeles Lakers home game against the Detroit Pistons. Both players were aggressively nudging one another in the third quarter of the game during a free throw which caused James to elbow Stewart in the face and led to a bloody situation.
The Lakers’ small forward is suspended for one game without pay against the New York Knicks on Tuesday “for recklessly hitting Stewart in the face and initiating an on-court altercation.” This will be the first-ever suspension in his 19-year career. The Pistons center is suspended for two games without pay against the Miami Heat on Tuesday and Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday due to “escalating an on-court altercation by repeatedly and aggressively pursuing in an unsportsmanlike manner.”
As seen during the game, Stewart continuously charged at James after the free throw and multiple players and referees consistently tried to separate the two with Stewart rampaging through numerous officials. Whether James intentionally connected with Stewart is uncertain, but evidently upset Stewart gravely as the center was bleeding profusely and needed five stitches.
Both were ejected following reviews with James’s actions considered as a flagrant 2 foul and Stewart committing two technical fouls. Lakers’ point guard Russell Westbrook also received a technical foul and was quite surprised during the post-game interview as he was unaware of the call. According to Referee Scott Foster, Westbrook’s foul was due to him being an “escalator and not a peacemaker.” The game resumed and finished with 121-116 in favor of the Lakers.
Rumor has it that James tried to get Stewart’s phone number to apologize for the rumble.
In case you missed it, the Staples Center has been renamed to Crypto.com Arena.
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