MIAMI (AP) — Caleb Martin’s scuffle with Christian Koloko will keep him out of the Miami-Toronto rematch on Monday night.
Martin has been suspended for one game by the NBA, after the league determined he was the instigator in a scuffle with Koloko that spilled into the baseline seats near the Miami bench during a Heat-Raptors game on Saturday.
Also suspended: Heat rookie Nikola Jovic, who was found to have left the bench area during the incident. Koloko was fined $15,000 for grabbing Martin during the altercation.
The league handed down the penalties Sunday night. Martin and Jovic will miss Monday’s Raptors-Heat game. Both Martin and Koloko were whistled for technical fouls and ejected from Saturday’s matchup.
“Overall, I’ve got to be more professional in the way that I handle those type of situations,” Martin said Saturday night, after Miami held on for a 112-109 victory.
Jovic hasn’t even made his NBA regular-season debut yet. Martin will lose about $44,700 in salary for his suspension, Jovic about $15,500.
Martin fouled Koloko as the two jostled for position on a rebound early in the third quarter, with the Raptors’ rookie ending up on the ground. Martin walked toward him, Koloko bounced up quickly, tempers flared and Martin then drove Koloko backward into the seats — the ones taking the brunt of the impact not occupied by any fans at that time. There were some fans in nearby seats who had some contact with those involved in the scrum.
Koloko wasn’t sure why any of it happened.
“I was as confused as you,” Koloko said. “I have no idea. … I don’t even know him, so I don’t know what was going on through his head.”
Jovic was standing near the end of the Heat bench, not far from where Martin and Koloko were tangled, but was still found to have broken the NBA rule saying that all players not participating in the game must remain in the immediate vicinity of their bench during an altercation.
Security personnel from both teams rushed to the spot in an effort to break things up, as did almost all of the other players who were on the court at the time, at least two Heat assistants, and Raptors coach Nick Nurse — whose bench was on the other end of the court.
“Christian will be fine,” Nurse said.