With just over two minutes to play in the Denver Nuggets victory over the Miami Heat on Monday night, reigning MVP Nikola Jokic and Markieff Morris were both ejected following an altercation on the court.
Morris delivered a hard "take" foul to Jokic at midcourt. Jokic took offense to the unnecessarily hard foul and shoved Morris in the back. Morris was assessed a Flagrant 2 foul and ejected. Jokic was ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Following the game, Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra was unhappy with Jokic's response to Morris' foul.
"That was a very dangerous and dirty play," Spoelstra said. "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."
For his part, Jokic felt bad about the way he reacted and how hard he shoved Morris.
"It's a stupid play," Jokic told said. "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."
A further remorseful Jokic added: "I don't know who showed me the clip, and actually (Morris') head snapped back, so I feel really bad. ... It's a bad move."