Nikola Jokic Responds to Controversial Ejection After Nuggets Game

Nikola Jokic

Getty Nikola Jokic

Nikola Jokic was ejected from the Denver Nuggets game against the Chicago Bulls just before halftime for reasons not entirely clear. The timing was also bad since it was Serbian Heritage Night in Chicago. With Jokic being from Serbia, many Serbian fans came to see him, which led to many boos upon his early ejection.

After the game, Jokic gave his candid thoughts on his ejection. While not sounding bitter, he, too, felt as though his actions did not warrant an ejection.

“I do not know [what happened there]. It is what it is. I am just happy that we did not play in Serbia this game, it was going to be really fun [to see] how we ended. It was interesting,” Jokic said, per AltitudeTV’s X account. “Some guys can say whatever. I think sometimes what I say is not even a technical (foul), so it is what it is.”

Jokic added that his actions warranted punishment but didn’t believe it warranted an ejection, but didn’t elaborate further to avoid a potential fine.

“I crossed the line, but sometimes that word does not cross the line… I like my money, so I am not gonna say whatever.”

While it’s not Jokic’s first ejection, it’s certainly one of the oddest ones.

Refs’ Explanation for Nikola Jokic Ejection

Cody Westerlund of 670 The Score Chicago caught up with crew chief Mark Lindsay to understand why the referees ejected Nikola Jokic. Lindsay gave Westerlund a simple explanation for why Jokic was thrown out.

“To be clear, Jokic was ejected after one technical foul because he directed profane language at the official that by our standards warranted an ejection,” Linday told Westerlund via Westerlund’s X account.

Westerlund then iterated twice what led to Jokic’s ejection, saying, “To be clear, Jokic was ejected after one technical foul.”

Westerlund did not provide exact details, but explained why Jokic’s words let to his ejection.

“We don’t typically publicly get into exactly what a player said, but the language reached the standard for an ejection.”

Typically, referees don’t eject players after one technical foul. Usually, a technical foul serves as a warning if they ever lose their temper at the referees. This time, Jokic had one volatile interaction with a referee, which somehow got him thrown out.

Mike Malone’s Thoughts on Nikola Jokic’s Ejection

The Nuggets pulled off the win despite Jokic’s odd ejection. After the game, head coach Mike Malone explained why Jokic’s ejection took him by surprise while making a pretty funny joke at the same time.

“He just felt the language that was used warranted an ejection. A one-tech ejection, which I was very shocked at. And when I heard what he said, I said, ‘I don’t understand the problem because when I grew up, that was a term of endearment,’” Malone said jokingly with reporters during his postgame press conference, per Darnell Mayberry’s X account.

What’s done is done, and the Nuggets beat the Bulls despite losing the two-time NBA MVP. However, the league could very well rescind the technical that was called or explain Jokic’s ejection.

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