Don’t mess with Christian Koloko, or he’ll mess back.
The Toronto Raptors rookie forward and former Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year was quick to defend himself Saturday as Koloko and the Miami Heat’s Caleb Martin got into a scuffle in the third quarter.
Koloko and Martin were fighting for a rebound when Martin pushed Koloko, then tackled the rookie into the first row of the stands. Both players were ejected.
Caleb Martin and Christian Koloko got into it during Raptors-Heat. pic.twitter.com/c5YbdanKpr— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) October 23, 2022
On Sunday, the NBA fined Koloko $15,000 for his role in the altercation, while Martin was suspended one game. Miami forward Nikola Jovic was also suspended one game for leaving the bench area and entering the altercation.
NBA levies suspensions on two Heat players. pic.twitter.com/yoPIjerGj6— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpears) October 24, 2022
After the game, Koloko said he was confused as to what caused the scuffle.
Koloko and the Raptors will get a chance to clear the air when they play Miami again on Monday. Martin and Jovic will serve their suspension that game.
The incident has been the only real hiccup in Koloko’s first three NBA games. Koloko is averaging nearly 16 minutes per game, an indication that the Raptors plan to use the 7-footer extensively this season.