Denver Nuggets star Jamal Murray was ejected from Tuesday’s showdown against the Dallas Mavericks after what appeared to be an egregiously dirty play.
With just under five minutes remaining in the third quarter, Murray stumbled backward after a collision with Tim Hardaway Jr. of the Mavericks.
At that point, inexplicably, Murray rose up and reached between Hardaway’s legs with his right arm, leading to Hardaway to doubling over.
The ref closest to the incident immediately blew the whistle and conferred with the other officials. Initially, the call was just a foul on Murray. After a discussion among the refs, it was upgraded to a Flagrant 2.
Given the horrible officiating that has been commonplace in the NBA over the past few weeks, the swift response to Tuesday’s antics was a welcome surprise.
Murray had 16 points when he was booted from the game.
Fortunately, despite the absence of arguably the team’s second best player, Denver was able to hold on and defeat Dallas 117-113.
After the game, Hardway Jr. was very upfront about what occurred.
“Just playing the game and I guess [Murray] was just frustrated that they didn’t call a foul,” he said.
“I was trying to do the best I can to deny the ball. The rest speaks for itself. It happens in the game. It sucks, but it doesn’t even matter at this point. We lost.”
Murray has always been regarded as a good guy, and that’s why he and his girlfriend were treated with such respect when their private video leaked. It just seemed like the right thing to do. But if he starts developing a reputation for being a dirty player, all that built up goodwill will go away just as easily as it came.
A final decision on whether Murray will be suspended or not for the action should come within the next 24 hours. But based on past precedent, it would be shocking if the league didn’t respond in some capacity to deter stuff like this from happening in the future.
Karl-Anthony Towns’ reaction to Jordyn Woods’ Buss It video speaks for itself.
— Game 7 (@game7__) January 26, 2021
A longtime sports reporter, Carlos Garcia has written about some of the biggest and most notable athletic events of the last 5 years. He has been credentialed to cover MLS, NBA and MLB games all over the United States. His work has been published on Fox Sports, Bleacher Report, AOL and the Washington Post.