WASHINGTON -- With 30 seconds to go at the end of a seemingly ordinary Bucks-Wizards game, Monta Ellis was fouled hard by Bradley Beal on a layup attempt. Ellis hit the floor and tumbled into the row of photographers. Beal quickly extended a hand in what looked like an attempt to help Ellis off the floor, when all of a sudden Brandon Jennings rushed in and shoved Beal in the back. A tussle ensued, and after official review, both Beal and Jennings were ejected with Flagrant-2 fouls.
After the game, each of the three players reacted to the incident.
On the foul:
- Beal: "I went for the ball."
- Jennings: "With 30-some seconds left, I know a team never wants to give up an easy basket, but in that type of situation I feel like you should just wrap the guy up instead of just pushing him or fouling him once he's in the air."
- Ellis: "He just fouled me hard."
On Jennings's reaction:
- Beal: "I guess [Jennings] was defending his teammate, I guess, so he came up and pushed me. It's just all part of basketball. It gets physical. I mean, it is what it is. I just have to deal with it."
- Jennings: "I was just trying to protect my teammate. I didn't think I was going to get kicked out for it.... when you see a nasty fall, your first [instinct] is 'Watch out, everyone get out of the way.'"
- Ellis: "That's what a teammate is supposed to do. It was a great job. That's what we gotta do. We gotta make our mark. If somebody foul us like that, we gotta react."
The play and altercation afterward will certainly come under review by the league, but it was clear from Ellis's body language post-game that he was still not completely over the foul. Bucks coach Scott Skiles and Wizards coach Randy Wittman both claimed they had not seen the replay enough to comment. Skiles said he was trying to make sure his other players weren't getting off the bench to enter the fray.