The NBA announced Monday night that it had suspended Houston Rockets guard James Harden for one game without pay for kicking Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron Jamesin the groin during Sunday’s game won by the Rockets in overtime.
Harden said after the game that he didn’t believe he would be disciplined by the league.
Harden, who didn’t speak with reporters Monday, left with the team for Tuesday’s game at Atlanta.
He said the kick, which occurred in the third quarter, was more of a reaction to what was happening after he fell to the floor while getting double-teamed by James Jones and James. With Harden on his back, he kicked James in the groin.
Harden was given a flagrant foul 1 for kicking James.
It’s not the first time the league has suspended a player for kicking someone in the groin.
In the 2012-13 season, Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade was suspended one game for kicking Ramon Sessions in the groin. During the 2006 Western Conference semifinals, Jason Terry, then of the Dallas Mavericks, punched Michael Finley of the San Antonio Spurs in the groin during a scrum for a loose ball. Terry was suspended for one game, missing Game 6.
In Sunday’s game, there were five technical fouls called, the flagrant on Harden, 16 fouls in the third quarter and several brief scrums, including one between James and Rockets guard Patrick Beverley, who was pushed down to the floor as he tried to get back up.
“It was a pretty intense game that started off with a little scrum on the floor in front of our bench with Pat and LeBron,” Houston coach Kevin McHale said Monday. “It just kind of stayed kind of chippy all game long, which is fine. Some games are chippy like that.”
The Harden kick angered the Cavs.
“It was an intentional groin kick,” Jones said. “It was an intentional kick to a troublesome area.”
Added James: “Obviously that’s not a basketball play. Obviously the league will probably take a look at it. I have no idea why he would do that, but two competitors just trying to go at it and he won this one.”
Several Rockets players were hit hard in the game, including Harden, the NBA’s leading scorer.
The Rockets, who have won five consecutive games, have moved on to the Hawks, who sit atop the Eastern Conference standings.
“Not even thinking about that because I don’t think anything that happened in that game last night for either team warrants anybody to miss a game,” Terry said. “So not even thinking about down that line.”
Tuesday’s suspension will mark Harden’s first missed game of the 2014-15 season.
I REALLY WANTED THIS TO BE MISHONS FIRST SINGLE,FOR A NUMBER OF REASONS,YOUNG NIGGAS REPRESENT NO LOVE IN TODAYS SOCIETY,THE KIDS VOCALS AND THE TOPIC
In a basketball context, being rated 1,741st amongst your peers wouldn’t put you close to superstar status. But for Michael Jordan, he has found himself (for the first time ever) in the company of the planet’s wealthiest – appearing on Forbes’ annual “World’s Billionaires” list. Joining 290 other newcomers, his estimated net worth of $1 billion USD – along with his $100 million a year royalties he receives from his deal with Nike – puts him nestled between Summerfield Johnston, Jr. of Coca-Cola and Morris Kahn of Amdocs.
Other people of note with an athletic connection include Nike’s Phil Knight at 35th with $21.5 billion USD (tied with Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Ballmer). Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trail Blazers owner, Paul Allen, checks in at 51st with $17.5 billion USD. Additionally, Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich stacks up as the 137th wealthiest person in the world with $9.1 billion USD.
The wealthiest man in the world remains Bill Gates at an estimated net worth of $79.2 billion USD – thus making him the “Michael Jordan” of making money. To see the entire list, head here.
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