Melo Ejected After Hitting Sefolosha During Knicks-Hawks Game
New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony got ejected for hitting Hawks' Thabo Sefolosha during the second quarter after the two were boxing each other out for a rebound. The Hawks eventually handled the Knicks 102-98 on Wednesday night.
Carmelo Anthony aka "Melo" was called for a double flagrant foul for hitting Sefolosha in the face which is an automatic ejection from the game. The Knicks' all-star forward exited early in the contest with over three minutes remaining before halftime, while Atlanta held a slim three point edge during the punching incident.
Thabo Sefolosha appeared to be fighting for a rebound with Melo after Knicks reserve Justin Holiday missed a three-point attempt from the left wing. As Sefolosha tried to get the rebound, Anthony swung his arm and hit the Hawks' swingman in the jaw then pushed him backward.
It was still unclear what the reason was behind Melo's uncharacteristic behavior, as he declined to comment about the incident after the game. He did not address the media about what happened and remained mum over the incident. Thabo Sefolosha was also whistled for a technical foul for retaliating by pushing Melo after he got hit, and stated during the post game interview that Carmelo Anthony's fist was in his face, via ESPN.
The Swiss national Thabo Sefolosha of the Atlanta Hawks is known for being a mild-mannered person, but after he got hit, people believed that it is a natural reaction to retaliate when somebody hits you in the face for no reason. Carmelo Anthony and Thabo Sefolosha were both whistled for technical fouls before officials reviewed the replay and assessed Anthony a flagrant foul 2, in a report by Yahoo Sports.
Despite leaving the game early, Carmelo Anthony recorded 10 points on 4-of-9 shooting, with five rebounds and one assist in just 15 minutes of action. Melo's ejection was already his second in the young NBA season. The Atlanta Hawks struggled, but were able to take advantage of Anthony's absence and escaped with a close victory over the Knicks. The Hawks were led by Dennis Schroder who scored 27 points, and center Dwight Howard who had another stellar double-double game, 16 points and grabbed 22 rebounds.
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