The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Phoenix Suns 109-95 on Thursday evening. In doing so they took a 2-1 lead in the series.
As has been the case on multiple occasions throughout the last week, controversy ensued after Game 3.
Late in the outing, with roughly a minute remaining, Lakers guard Dennis Schroder went up for a lay-up. As he was elevating, Suns guard Devin Booker pushed him.
Devin Booker was given a flagrant 2 and was ejected for this push of Dennis Schröder. pic.twitter.com/dJBseyJGkW
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) May 28, 2021
Booker was promptly ejected.
After the fact, Lakers big man Anthony Davis pointed out how dangerous Booker’s play was.
“Can’t happen… that’s a dirty play”
Anthony Davis on Devin Booker getting ejected for pushing Dennis Schroder pic.twitter.com/daRLhLD91Q
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) May 28, 2021
“[That] can’t happen, you can’t do that,” he said.
“It’s a dirty play, Dennis could’ve really gotten hurt right there. That just can’t happen. Hard fouls, things like that, [that’s] playoff basketball and we accept those but to blatantly push a guy with two hands off the air is a scary play. Good thing he’s okay but plays like that are unacceptable.”
Davis was not alone in that assessment. Fans at home agreed.
AD putting Devin Booker on blast at the end of the game on the flagrant 2 foul on Booker. Rightfully so. Weak, dirty play from Booker is a really bad look for him. Don’t think he wants that reputation.
— Pistol Pete (@PeteOfTheMoment) May 28, 2021
Schroder said something on that Lebron foul there was bad blood between Schroder and Devin Booker. That was a dirty play by book. They’re down 1-2 and already breaking at the seams.
— The Pettiest Laker Fan (@ThePettiestLA) May 28, 2021
Calls for a suspension followed.
Suspend Devin Booker!
— Unc (@_UncleLik) May 28, 2021
NBA gotta suspend Devin Booker lowkey or fine him for that play
— BLACK Lavender (@BelieveInLamon) May 28, 2021
Schroder, for his part, seemed to agree with the calls for a suspension.
Ayesha knows how to stay in the news https://t.co/shn4dxsmTZ
— Game 7 (@game7__) May 27, 2021
“If somebody disrespects me first, I’m gonna do the same thing… I was talking to somebody and he took it too sensitive and fouled me,” he said, per Lakers SB Nation reporter Harrison Faigen. “That wasn’t a basketball play, and regular season, it’s probably a suspension as well.”
Those two examples coupled with the fact that, earlier this season, one player literally fractured another’s wrist and faced zero repercussions suggests that the NBA will likely take a “hands-off” approach in this instance as well.