Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James and Detroit forward Isaiah Stewart were ejected following an altercation during their game at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, in which James struck Stewart in the face and Stewart fought back at James
The incident happened with 9:18 remaining left in the third quarter and the Pistons leading 78-66, when Detroit’s Jerami Grant had just made a free throw as James and Stewart jostled for position in case Grant missed the foul shot. James swung his left forearm with force and struck Stewart in the face with his fist, causing significant bleeding near Stewart’s right eye. At first, James tried to calm the situation, but Stewart took offense which set off a wild scene.
Several Pistons, including coach Dwane Casey and rookie Cade Cunningham, tried to restrain Stewart. The forward knocked multiple people over trying to go after Lakers players, and it took nearly two minutes to get Stewart off the court. Russell Westbrook was issued a technical foul following the melee, and James was issued a flagrant foul 2 and ejected for just the second time in his career. Stewart faces a suspension and fines.
The game against Detroit was only LeBron’s second game back after missing eight consecutive games with an abdominal strain. He had 10 points and five assists at the time of the incident. The Lakers took the win 121-116; the Pistons and Lakers will meet up again in Los Angeles on Nov. 28.
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