Dillon Brooks suspended, Donovan Mitchell fined $20K after brawl in Cavaliers win over Grizzlies
Dillon Brooks and Donovan Mitchell’s on-court altercation briefly wreaked havoc during the Cavaliers’ 128-113 win over the Grizzlies on Thursday and now the NBA has issued its consequences.
Brooks, who appeared to instigate the clash, has been suspended for one game. Mitchell will be fined $20,000, according to a statement from the league on Friday.
The following was released by the NBA. pic.twitter.com/NvSOrOpCzZ
— NBA Communications (@NBAPR) February 3, 2023
The league's statement confirmed that Brooks struck Mitchell in the groin area in an "unsportsmanlike manner" after missing a layup and falling to the floor. In response, Mitchell threw the game ball and pushed Brooks. As you can see in the video below, things continued to get rowdy. Brooks even tackled one of his own coaches, who appeared to be trying to stop the fight.
Things got heated between Donovan Mitchell and Dillon Brooks in Cleveland 👀
The scuffle resulted in both players getting ejected. pic.twitter.com/mhK321t6RQ
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) February 3, 2023
After the court was cleared, officials gave the incident a thorough review. Brooks was assessed a flagrant 2 foul and he and Mitchell were both ejected.
Both teams had their share of chippy comments in postgame media availability. Cavaliers head coach J.B. Bickerstaff defended Mitchell after the game, calling what Brooks did a "cheap shot in multiple ways."
Mitchell noted that he's been "busting [Brooks'] a** for years" and urged the NBA to "do something about" his on-court behavior. The Cavaliers guard referenced "other guys" in the league who have seen Brooks initiate unnecessary contact.
During the Warriors' expedition to the Western Conference finals last season, Brooks was ejected and suspended one game after his hand made direct contact with Gary Payton II's head. Payton went down and sustained a fractured elbow in the fall. According to Brooks, it was an accident that didn't cause any "bad blood."
For his part in the most recent incident, Brooks didn't seem to have any defense. According to ESPN, he agreed with the call, saying "it saved me some T[echincal]'s." When Brooks was asked about the altercation, All-Star Ja Morant reportedly interjected and said the Grizzlies would not talk about the incident.
"Anything when it comes to negative about the Grizzlies, we normally, you know, get the punishment," Morant said via ESPN. "It ain't the same. They [the NBA] hate us."
A little over 15 minutes after the league's statement dropped, Morant hit Twitter with both a thinking and laughing emoji that may have been in reference to the ruling — or not.
— Ja Morant (@JaMorant) February 4, 2023
Brooks had nine points and two rebounds for Memphis while Mitchell finished with six points after shooting 2-of-11 from the field. The suspended Grizzlies forward will make his return on Feb. 7 against the Chicago Bulls.