NBA Suspends Five Players For Roles In Heat-Pelicans Brawl


(MENAFN- The Peninsula) AFP

New York: Miami Heat scoring leader Jimmy Butler was among five players suspended by the NBA on Sunday for their roles in an on-court brawl between the Heat and New Orleans Pelicans.

Butler and Pelicans forward Naji Marshall were each suspended one game without pay for instigating and engaging in an on-court altercation in Miami's 106-95 victory on Friday at New Orleans.

Heat center Thomas Bryant and Pelicans guard Jose Alvarado of Puerto Rico were each suspended three games without pay for leaving the bench area during an on-court altercation and fighting.

Miami forward Nikola Jovic, a 20-year-old Serbian, was banned for one game without pay for leaving the bench area and entering the skirmish.

Miami's Kevin Love sparked the incident when he committed a foul to prevent a basket by Zion Williamson of the Pelicans with only 41 seconds elapsed in the fourth quarter.

Alvarado, Bryant, Butler and Marshall were whistled for technical fouls and ejected from the game.

Alvarado was set to begin to serve his suspension on Sunday when the Pelicans play host to Chicago, with Marshall serving his ban then also.

Bryant will begin serving his suspension on Monday when the Heat visit Sacramento Butler and Jovic will also serve their suspensions when Miami plays the Kings.

The Heat rank eighth in the Eastern Conference at 31-25 with a three-game win streak while the Pelicans are fifth in the Western Conference at 34-23.

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