The NBA handed out a $25,000 fine to Serge Ibaka today for clubbing Blake Griffin in the junk during a game in Los Angeles on Sunday. The altercation, which was called a Flagrant Foul 1 at the time of incident was also retrospectively upgraded to a Flagrant Foul 2 which would have ejected Ibaka from the game if called live.
In a tight battle the Oklahoma City Thunder went on to win the game at Los Angeles 108-104. A task that perhaps would have been made much more difficult if Ibaka had been removed from the contest.
The majority of Basketball Twitter has certainly been surprised by the news that the Oklahoma City big man escaped a suspension for this low blow. There have also been a few interesting reactions to Ibaka’s antics from his peers.
Kobe Bryant was quite deliberate in his stance on the subject:
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It’s safe to say that no man takes kindly to a nut punch, regardless of how close you are to the incident. With technology the way it is nowadays, it’s just not possible to do this type of thing discretely. Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell may very well have spent entire games nut punching each other in the 1950s but we would never know.
While there’s no doubting Griffin’s displeasure with Ibaka’s chosen defensive strategy, he did take to Twitter to hopefully lay the subject to rest. Griffin used the opportunity brilliantly to promote his highly entertaining Kia Optima marketing campaign.
Kid Blake: Who are you? Future Blake: you from the future… Don't listen to anything else I've told you just start wearing a cup.
— Blake Griffin (@blakegriffin32) March 6, 2013
Blake Griffin has shown us all that even a guy that gets Kamikaze punched in the minerals can make good of the situation.
If you’re ever having a really bad day, just re-read this story and remind yourself that everything will be just fine.