Officials crack down on on-court behavior as the NBA playoffs reach a crescendo.
Miami Heat forward Chris Andersen has been suspended for game six of the NBA Eastern Conference finals after shoving Indiana Pacers forward Tyler Hansbrough in game five.
The incident occurred with 9:02 remaining in the second quarter of Miami’s 90-79 win over the Pacers in Miami on Thursday.
Andersen elbowed Hansbrough to the floor, and after the two bumped chests he shoved the Pacers player, then “resisted efforts to bring the altercation to an end,” the NBA said in a statement.
Andersen was assessed a flagrant foul, but league officials upgraded it from a flagrant one to a more serious flagrant two category.
Andersen’s absence will be a blow for the NBA champion Heat, who hold a 3-2 series lead and can return to the NBA finals with a victory in game six at Indiana on Saturday.
Andersen is 15-for-15 from the field in the series.
The winner of the Eastern Conference finals will face Western Conference champions San Antonio in the NBA title series starting next Thursday.