Denver Nuggets superstar big man Nikola Jokic didn’t take too kindly to a hard foul from Miami Hear forward Markieff Morris, and was ejected for shoving Morris to the ground in retaliation with 2 minutes, 39 seconds left in the fourth quarter of Denver’s 113-96 win over Miami on Monday night.
Morris was assessed a flagrant foul 2 and Jokic was ejected, and his shove from behind of Morris will likely be reviewed by the league, which could lead to a suspension and fine.
“That was a very dangerous and dirty play,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said, according to ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk. “Keef took a foul, and it was one of those fastbreak take fouls, and he did with his shoulder. You might deem that maybe as a little bit more than just slapping somebody, but after watching it on film, it was a take foul. That’s how I saw it. And the play after, that’s just absolutely uncalled for.”
“It’s a stupid play,” Jokic stated. “I feel bad. I am not supposed to react that way. … I thought it was going to be a take foul. … I think it was a dirty play. And I just needed to protect myself. I felt bad. I am not supposed to react that way, but I need to protect myself.”
“I don’t know who showed me the clip, and actually his head snapped back [after the shove], so I feel really bad. … It’s a bad move.”
“I will concern myself when they tell us he’s suspended,” Nuggets head coach Michael Malone said. “I am not going to waste any of my time looking into my crystal ball and my tea leaves. I don’t have any of that. He’s available until they tell me he’s not. And I don’t see any reason why he wouldn’t be available Wednesday night.”
“This whole thing could have been a whole lot uglier if Markieff was actually facing Jokic,” Spoelstra said. “The fact that he had his back turned and he made a play like that, blindsiding him, just a very dangerous play.”