Being suspended, fined or ejected in the National Basketball Association isn’t something very odd nowadays, considering how soft the league has become regarding the actions or comments of their starts to set a good example for young people around the world.
And this season hasn’t been the exception to that rule, with players being fined about tweets, and even ejected after reviewing other plays in videos with some sanctions that to this day we just can’t seem to explain.
Over the course of history, we’ve witnessed some pretty odd sanctions, either fines, ejections or suspensions due to some misbehavior on and off the court, and today, we’re going to walk you through 10 of the strangest of them all.
10. Tim Duncan: Ejected for Laughing
Joey Crawford is far from being one of the fan favorite referees in the history of the game due to his odd and loud temper, and he was responsible for one of the strangest ejections in the history of the league.
See, 10 years ago in April, the referee reportedly challenged no other than Tim Duncan to a fight, and when the Big Fundamental laughed at that proposal from the bench, Crawford immediately ejected him. That eventually cost the rest of the season for Crawford, who was reinstated to begin the next campaign.
9. Jeff Van Gundy: Fined for defending Yao Ming
Amidst the 2005 playoffs on a series between the Dallas Mavericks and the Houston Rockets (coached by Jeff Van Gundy), the Rockets coached publicly complained about the treatment his star center Yao Ming was getting, stating he wasn’t getting the respect he deserved.
For that complaint, Van Gundy was handed the fattest, most expensive fine in league history ever given to a coach of $100,000, followed by more complaints stating that Mark Cuban was constantly talking smack about the officiating but was never fined. To make things even worse, the Rockets were knocked out of the playoffs after that series.
8. Mark Cuban: Fined for everything
Contrary to Van Gundy’s comments, Mark Cuban actually holds the record for most fines in the NBA, and he just doesn’t seem to care how much he has to pay as long as everybody hears what he’s got to say about... Well, everything that goes around in the league.
See, Mark Cuban has been fined 100 thousand, 250 thousand and even a league record $500,000 for several remarks, including three fines over a one week span. Hell, at least he claims to match every dollar he pays in fines with a donation to charity, so let’s hope he never shuts his mouth.
7. Tyrus Thomas: Fined for wanting “Free Money”
Over a decade ago, Tyrus Thomas was considered to be one of the most athletic and physical specimens in the league, and everybody was pretty hyped to see him be a part of the All-Star weekend Slam Dunk Contest.
So, when asked about why he wanted to be a part of this contest, Thomas stated that he was just interested in the “free money”, as all participants were getting over $16,000 regarding of their position. Eventually, he wound up getting a $10,000 fine for those comments, and he ended up in the last place of the competition.
6. Stacey Augmon: Suspended for throwing lotion
It’s pretty normal to see players frustrated after getting their butts kicked, and more often than not, they refuse to speak to the media, and that’s exactly what happened to Stacey Augmon after a 16 deficit blowout back in 2005 when he was playing with the Orlando Magic.
Nonetheless, he was forced to break the silence when a reporter asked his teammate Steve Francis is the “wheels were coming off”. Augmon responded in a harsh way with some words we cannot repeat at a very loud volume. After the reported stated that he wasn’t talking to Augmon, he grabbed a bottle of lotion and threw it at him, being handed a suspension and forced to buy the reporter a brand new suit.
5. Vladimir Radmanovic: Fined for snowboarding
Obviously, if you’re an NBA player, there are some things you’re just not allowed to do in order to protect your body from getting hurt and be forced to spend some time in the bleachers, but Vladimir Radmanovic didn’t seem to care much about that during the 2007 All-Star break.
The former Laker decided that the break was the perfect time to finally fulfill his dream of snowboarding, so he headed to Utah to try it. Sadly for him, he got hurt and told the team he’d fallen because of a patch of ice, but they obviously didn’t believe him, handing him a huge $500,000 fine for his misbehavior.
4. David Kahn: Fined for talking about Michael Beasley
Michael Beasley is one of the league’s biggest “what ifs”, as his talent is beyond doubt but he was always extremely undisciplined and immature to ever make the most of it, and David Kahn was pretty aware of it when he acquired him for his Minnesota Timberwolves.
So, the Timberwolves’ then General Manager was pretty hyped about landing the former 2nd overall pick for his team, and he stated during a radio interview that he trusted him despite being “a very young and immature kid who smoked too much marijuana”, something that eventually cost him $50,000 and well, apparently he shouldn’t have trusted Beas anyways.
3. Allen Iverson: Fined for violating the dress code
Well, Allen Iverson is pretty much the reason why David Stern decided to establish a dress code to begin with, as he was quite worried about Iverson’s public persona and his ties with crips and gangs, dressed like a hip-hop thug rather than an athlete kids could look up to.
Obviously, The Answer didn’t seem to care much about this dress code and was constantly handed fines for breaking it, having to pay as much as $50,000 for this matter. As a matter of fact, the Sixers were even forced to pay as much as $200,000 because of Iverson, Korver, Salmons and Ollie, who all wore their shorts below the knee, something clearly prohibited in this new “image issues” rules established by Stern.
2. Ron Artest: Suspended for brawling
We all know Metta World Peace / Ron Artest / Panda Friend and his... fierce temper, and he really took it up a notch during that infamous brawl in Detroit on November 19, 2004: The Malice At the Palace, when the Pistons and the Pacers went to the hands in the biggest brawl in NBA history.
Artest was one of the main participants in this regrettable event and he was even spotted fighting some Pistons fans, and he was suspended for 86 games, the longest nondrug-related suspension in league history. To make this even worse, he reportedly lost as much as $5,000,000 in salary due to this harsh suspension.
1. Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton: Suspended for pulling guns
This one has to be one of the most embarrassing moments in NBA history, as Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton reportedly pulled guns at each other in the Washington Wizards locker room after an altercation that took place in a flight back home from Phoenix where the two teammates were playing cards.
Javaris was allegedly sick and tired of Arenas and his temper and after the incident, Gilbert even made fun of it during a pregame huddle with some of his teammates. That stupidity eventually cost him 55 games and as much as $7,000,000 in salary, and he’s not even in the league anymore because this kind of immature and dangerous behavior.