Despite the exciting finish in Game 4 between the Denver Nuggets and Phoenix Suns Sunday, the headline of the night was an . Jokic ended up shoving Ishbia while trying to retrieve a ball that the Suns owner was holding onto and was assessed a technical foul for the incident. While there was some speculation that Jokic could be suspended for Game 5, the NBA announced on Monday that he won't be suspended. However, the two-time MVP will be given a $25,000 fine for the altercation.
The odd situation took place in the second quarter after Josh Okogie of the Suns flew into the front row trying to save a ball from going out of bounds. Jokic walked over to where Okogie and the ball were to try and setup a 5-on-4 fast break opportunity for Denver, however, the ball was in the hands of Ishbia. The Suns owner wouldn't give the ball to Jokic, and as he tried to reach for the ball he shoved Ishbia, to which a fan shoved Jokic back. The Nuggets superstar was assessed a technical foul, and Denver went on to lose the game.
Here's how the situation went down:
After the game, the Nuggets weren't shy about their distaste of Ishbia's actions. Aaron Gordon called the situation "super lame." Nuggets coach Michael Malone said it was "crazy" that Jokic was given a technical. Jokic called into question the league's failure to protect players from fan interference.
"The fan put the hand on me first," Jokic said. "I thought the league is supposed to protect us or whatever, but maybe I'm wrong. We will see." When asked if he knew who the fan in question was, he revealed that he did, but that it didn't matter. "I know who he is, but he's a fan, isn't he? If he's sitting on the court then he's a fan, isn't he? That doesn't mean, that, whoever he is, he's a fan, he cannot influence the game by holding the ball." Jokic ultimately concluded that it was Ishbia that should be punished. "He's a fan, he's supposed to get kicked out if he's influencing the game."
With the decision made, the two teams can now put this moment past them and focus on the task at hand: advancing in the playoffs. After the Nuggets got out to a 2-0 series lead, the Suns protected home court in back-to-back games and tied up the series. Now, the Nuggets will have a chance to respond on Tuesday with Game 5 in Denver. And with the announcement that Jokic won't suffer any suspension, the Nuggets won't have to worry about not having their best player in the lineup.