Toronto Raptors forward Serge Ibaka will likely serve a suspension for instigating a brawl against Cleveland Cavalier forward Marquese Chriss.
The two were jockeying for inside positioning when Ibaka fell to the floor after a missed pass right before the end of the third quarter. Chriss walked past him and appeared to say something, so Ibaka stood up and grabbed Chriss by the throat to start the altercation.
Both were tossed immediately. ESPN NBA front office insider Bobby Marks speculated a 3 to 5-game suspension after the game. He also relayed that it would be a finanical toll on Ibaka.
“The cost would be $149K for every game missed,” Marks tweeted.
In May 2017, he fought Chicago’s Robin Lopez, causing the NBA to assess both with 1-game suspensions during the Raptors’ 122-120 victory.
In the third quarter, Lopez and Ibaka exchanged punches after tempers flared during a physical battle on the boards. Ibaka nudged Lopez with an elbow and Lopez retaliating by swiping the ball out of Ibaka’s hands during a dead play. The two then had to be separated and restrained.
Back on Jan. 10, 2018, Ibaka exchanged blows with Miami’s James Johnson, prompting another series of 1-game suspensions.
The incident occurred with 7:50 remaining in the third quarter of the Heat’s 90-89 road victory.
The Cavs were putting the finishing touches on a 126-101 home victory that moved them to 17-50. The Raptors fell to 46-19 and 2.5 games behind Milwaukee for first place in the Eastern Conference.
Ibaka played 17 minutes and tallied 8 points, 7 boards and a block. He averages 15.2 points and 8.1 rebounds on the year.
Chriss went scoreless in 14 minutes of action, recording just 3 rebounds and a block. His season averages are 4.5 points and 3.1 boards.