The NBA announced suspensions for Saturday’s fight between the Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets, with Brandon Ingram receiving the harshest penalty at four games. Rajon Rondo was suspended three games, and Chris Paul received a two-game suspension.
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That Ingram received the lengthiest suspension is hardly a surprise. He began the matter in some regard by shoving James Harden after being called for a foul. Ingram then turned and appeared confrontational with a referee before being pushed away by Lance Stephenson in his effort to diffuse the situation.
However, that inadvertently led to Rondo and Paul exchanging words, then blows. As they were being separated, Ingram rushed back into the picture and punched Paul. The Rockets’ point guard alleged Rondo spitting in his face led to a finger being pushed into Rondo’s.
Rondo denied doing as much, and the Lakers reportedly stand by that after watching video of the fight.
Aside from disappointment stemming from the unruly scene, the Lakers are now short two rotation players for a prolonged stretch of time. That’s further compounded when taking into account they are a team that’s very much in the infancy of developing chemistry and growing together.
Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma are expected to be pressed into larger roles while Rondo and Ingram serve their respective suspensions. With the league’s ruling, Rondo can return Oct. 27 against the San Antonio Spurs, with Ingram back two days later against the Minnesota Timberwolves.