Author: Brett Pollakoff


Joakim Noah fined $25K for ‘pushing a fan’


Joakim Noah was fined $25,000 for “pushing a fan,” the league announced on Friday via official release.

The incident occurred as Noah and his teammates were exiting the floor at halftime of Chicago’s Game 2 loss to the Cavaliers.

Noah complained that a fan had spit on him as he was leaving the court, but it’s unclear whether or not that happened before or after Noah’s minor tap/push of this particular individual.

There are two sides here, obviously. Fans shouldn’t be allowed to hurl insults while in close proximity to players without consequences, but at the same time, athletes at the professional level simply cannot react physically (or even verbally) to fans, no matter the circumstances.

Matt Barnes fined $50K for directing inappropriate language at James Harden’s mother

Trevor Ariza, Matt Barnes

Matt Barnes has been fined $50,000 for “directing inappropriate language at a fan,” the league announced on Friday via official release.

That “fan” happened to be James Harden’s mother.

Barnes reportedly told the woman “S— my d—, b—-” and later apologized after he found out who the woman was.

The reason for the fine being so steep is Barnes’ repeat-offender status.

Barnes was fined $25,000 in December for swearing at Washington fans and another $25,000 in January for doing the same to Phoenix fans (not Suns owner Robert Sarver, according to the league).

The fines are minuscule when compared to the salary of even the most modestly-paid NBA players, so don’t expect Barnes to change his behavior as a result of them anytime soon.

2015 NBA Draft Combine participant list released; a few big names noticeably absent

D'Angelo Russell, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson

The NBA has released its list of participants for this year’s Draft Combine, which will be held in Chicago from May 12-17.

While there are plenty of interesting lottery-pick level prospects expected to attend, the guys near the tops of most teams’ draft boards are noticeably absent from the list.

Karl-Anthony Towns and Jahlil Okafor are the names frequently discussed as the top two overall picks, and neither will attend. Same goes for international prospects like Emanuel Mudiay, Mario Hezonja and Kristaps Porzingis, all of whom project as lottery picks in more than one of the respected mock drafts that exist.

The combine consists of drills, measurements and interviews, and while this year will also feature a five-on-five scrimmage format which could make for some competitive games, most of the top prospects (i.e., anyone there who is expected to be a first-round selection) will be sitting that portion out.