Could Paul George be suspended for Game 7?
During the second quarter of Game 6, a brief scuffle broke out between Indiana Pacers George Hill and Atlanta Hawks Mike Scott. Although neither player was ejected, it should be noted that this was an altercation on the court. And by rule of the NBA, if an altercation is taking place, players are to remain in the immediate vicinity of their bench.
This is important because the Pacers had Paul George and Rasual Butler technically step on the court while the altercation was happening. The NBA has upheld this rule in the past. We all remember the Phoenix Suns series against the San Antonio Spurs in which Amar’e Stoudemire barely stepped onto the court and was suspended for Game 5. The New York Knicks also had players suspended during a playoff series with the Miami Heat in the late 90s because of a similar situation.
“During an altercation, all players not participating in the game must remain in the immediate vicinity of their bench. Violators will be suspended, without pay, for a minimum of one game and fined up to $50,000.”
At the end of the video you can see the Pacers players step on the court. In fact, it appears Butler takes a step inside the three-point line. I’m not sure the NBA could suspend Butler and not George, but nevertheless they will have a difficult decision to make considering Game 7 is on the horizon. This could be a huge blow for the Pacers who appear like they could squeak their way past the Hawks in a surprisingly difficult first round series.
Check out the video at the 48 second mark: