Nikola Jokic received a technical foul for his altercation with Suns owner Mat Ishbia during Game 4 of the Western Conference Semifinals.
The Serbian superstar, who scored game-high 53 points, went to take the ball from out of bounds while it was in Ishbia’s hands. The Suns owner refused to give the ball away and Jokic ended up pushing him.
Nuggets head coach Michael Malone defended his player, saying that the person who took the ball should have just given it to the Joker.
“I’m still not really sure what happened. I haven’t seen a video of it,” Malone said. “I think it’s crazy that Nikola got technical foul in that situation.
“He’s going to get the ball and some fan is holding on to the ball like he wants to be a part of the game. Just give the ball up man. You know what I mean? They deemed Nikola doing something that was excessive I guess and they gave him the tech. But I still don’t really understand it.”
When told by a journalist that the “fan” that Malone is referring is actually the owner of the Suns, it made no difference to the Nuggets coach. “I don’t give a sh*t,” he said. “I really don’t care.”
The Nuggets lost Game 4 124-129. The series will now move to Denver.