Nikola Jokic ejected after pushing Markieff Morris

Reigning NBA MVP Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets was sent off from a game against the Miami Heat on Monday night after pushing Markie...


Reigning NBA MVP Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets was sent off from a game against the Miami Heat on Monday night after pushing Markieff Morris to the ground. Morris was also ejected, for precipitating the incident with serious misconduct on his part.

The faults are the kind that often invite suspensions of the league, but no action had been taken Tuesday afternoon. With less than two minutes to go in a 113-96 win for the Nuggets in Denver, Morris burst firmly into Jokic as he passed.

Jokic responded by giving Morris a forearm behind his back, sending him to the ground. The incident prompted a melee of disputed players and team staff to gather on center court which ultimately broke without serious incident.

Morris lay there for several minutes, and a stretcher was brought in, but he got off the ground on his own. The team said he had a neck injury.

“He’s moving into the locker room right now,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said after the game. “We will do the necessary tests and do what we need to do to make sure he’s okay.”

After both players were sent off, the Heat’s Jimmy Butler committed a technical foul after yelling at Jokic on the Denver bench.

“It’s a stupid game,” Jokic told reporters after the game. “I feel bad. I’m not supposed to react that way, but I have to protect myself.

Morris was not available for comment after the game, but tweeted Tuesday, “I have undoubtedly made a serious mistake, which I always do, but I have never hit a man with his back turned. “

“It was a very dangerous and dirty room,” Spoelstra told reporters of Jokic’s shove. “It is absolutely unjustified.”

Jokic had 25 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists in the game for his first triple double of the season. He’s in the top 20 in all three categories this season as well as steals, and is an early repeat contender as an MVP.

Jokic has done his fair share of aggressive and overly aggressive plays in his career. In the fourth game of last season’s conference semifinals against the Suns, he punched Cameron Payne in the face while going for the ball. He was sent off and the Nuggets lost to the Suns, who had a four-game sweep. Jokic committed 10 technical fouls last season, placing him 11th in the league.

The Nuggets improved to 6-4 Monday night. The Heat, with Butler continuing their late career rebirth at 25 points per game, are 7-3.



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Newsrust - US Top News: Nikola Jokic ejected after pushing Markieff Morris
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