Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James has been suspended for one game following an on-court altercation with Detroit Pistons player Isaiah Stewart during a regular season matchup on Sunday (Nov. 21).
Stewart, a second-year player for the Pistons, received a two-game suspension for his role in the incident. The altercation between James and Stewart was sparked during a skirmish for a rebound during the third-quarter with James striking Stewart in the face with his elbow and hand, causing Stewart’s face to bleed profusely. Going into a rage, Stewart attempted to physically retaliate against James and had to be held back by several teammates, coaches, and officials. Both players were ejected from the game, escorted off the floor, and did not return.
According to the NBA, which levied suspensions against James and Stewart on Monday (Nov. 22), Stewart was disciplined for “escalating an on-court altercation by repeatedly and aggressively pursuing … James in an unsportsmanlike manner.” James was handed a suspension, the first of his 18 seasons in the league, “for recklessly hitting Stewart in the face and initiating an on-court altercation.”
James will miss the Lakers’ game against the New York Knicks tonight (Nov. 23) at Madison Square Garden, and Stewart won’t play when the Pistons host the Miami Heat tonight or when they travel to Milwaukee to play the Bucks on Wednesday (Nov. 24).
Hopefully, their suspensions will help decrease the bad blood between James and Stewart sooner than later, as they’ll meet again on Sunday (Nov. 28), when the Lakers and Pistons face off in Los Angeles for their second and last regular-season matchup.