Oklahoma City Thunder forward Serge Ibaka has been fined $25,000 by the league for punching Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin this past Sunday.
Ibaka and Griffin got tangled up in the paint battling for a rebound late in the fourth quarter on Sunday and Ibaka took out his frustration by swinging violently at Griffin and ended up landing the blow beneath the belt.
Ibaka said he did not intend to hurt Griffin and by the looks of it he didn’t. The officials in the game gave Ibaka just a flagrant one foul and he was allowed to remain in the game and came through with a big basket on the very next possession that helped the Thunder win the game.
The result was worse than what the intent was and Ibaka will pay the price. It looks like the league pretty much saw it the same way. It was a dumb move on Ibaka’s part but there’s really not a lot to say this was that dirty of a play.
The league also upgraded the foul to a flagrant two which would have resulted in an ejection had that been the call during the game.
Fortunately for the Thunder Ibaka isn’t getting a suspension and will be available tonight for a very important game as the Thunder host the Los Angeles Lakers at 9:30 p.m. EST on TNT.