Both Joel Embiid and Karl-Anthony Towns have been suspended for two games following their fight “and for their continued escalation following the incident” on Wednesday night in Philadelphia, the NBA announced on Thursday afternoon.
76ers guard Ben Simmons was not fined or suspended for his involvement in the scuffle, as he was seen as a “peacemaker” in the incident, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania.
All parties viewed Simmons as a peacemaker in scuffle. Simmons was seen on top of Towns, calming him down with with his arms. https://t.co/0LNuQewES8
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) October 31, 2019
Towns and Embiid got into it in the third quarter of Philadelphia’s 117-96 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night at the Wells Fargo Center. Midway through the period, Embiid and Simmons trapped Towns in the short corner, forcing a turnover. The two seven-foot centers didn’t let up once the ball went the other way, and a shoving match quickly ensued.
Towns eventually tackled Embiid, sparking a massive brawl under the hoop. Coaches and players from both teams finally pulled the players apart, and the two were ejected from the game.
The fight spilled over into social media after the game, too, with Embiid and Towns taking multiple shots at each other on Instagram. Embiid briefly looped both Towns’ parents and even former teammate Jimmy Butler into the internet feud, and Towns posted a series of photos from the brawl with the caption: “I aIN’t nO Bi–H.”
Embiid will miss Philadelphia’s games against the Portland Trail Blazers and Phoenix Suns before he can return on Wednesday night against the Utah Jazz. Towns will miss Minnesota’s games against the Washington Wizards and Milwaukee Bucks before he can make his return on Wednesday against the Memphis Grizzlies.
“While we are disappointed with the league’s decision, we understand the magnitude of this unfortunate incident,” Timberwolves president Gersson Rosas said in a statement, via Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. “The NBA is highly competitive and last night was a reflection of that. We support Karl and will move forward together as a group.”
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