Cleveland Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson was fined $25,000 by the NBA on Friday night, but not suspended, after sparking an altercation at the end of his team’s Game 1 loss to the Golden State Warriors a night earlier.
In a league announcement, NBA Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Kiki VanDeWeghe explained the fine was because Thompson failed “to leave the court in a timely manner following his ejection and for shoving the basketball in the face” of Warriors forward Draymond Green.
In the final seconds of Cleveland’s 124-114 overtime defeat, Thompson became incensed when Golden State’s guard Shaun Livingston launched a jumper with five seconds left in overtime despite the double-digit lead.
The Cavs’ forward, who had just two points and five rebounds in defeat, was called for a foul, a flagrant 2 foul that the NBA also downgraded to a flagrant 1 on Friday, while contesting the shot and then began jawing with Green afterward with 2.6 seconds remaining.
“I contested a shot that shouldn’t have been taken,” Thompson said afterward, per ESPN. “I mean, it’s like the unspoken rule in the NBA: If you’re up 10 or 11 with about 20 seconds left, you don’t take that shot. I make the contest, and next thing I know, I was being kicked out for a good contest that we learn in training camp. I don’t know why I got thrown out.”
Cavaliers forward Kevin Love reportedly will not be suspended for leaving the bench by a few steps during the near-melee, according to an ESPN report.
Game 2 is Sunday night in Oakland, Calif.
—Field Level Media