With 2:39 left to play in the contest between the Heat and the Nuggets at the Ball Arena, Denver was cruising to victory.
The shorthanded squad held a 17-point lead (111-94) over the 7-2 Miami Heat. That's when mayhem ensued.
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The Jokic-Morris altercation
Bringing the ball up the floor, Nikola Jokic was fouled hard by Markieff Morris which sparked quite the physical reaction from the Serbian center.
Nikola Jokic clobbers Markieff Morris from behind late in the fourth quarter and things get intense. pic.twitter.com/9RclknqIKB- Bally Sports Sun: HEAT (@BallyHEAT) November 9, 2021
Tensions flared but after things calmed down and upon review, both players were ejected. Morris was sent off for his Flagrant-2 foul on Jokic while the Nuggets center had to leave because he received his second technical of the game for his reaction to Morris' foul.
Jimmy Butler was also among those penalised, as he was assessed a technical for his reaction.
Jimmy Butler had words for Nikola Jokic after his foul on Markieff Morris. pic.twitter.com/iZnZbDs7uH- SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 9, 2021
Despite Morris' initial foul, Butler's reaction probably comes because of the severity and impact of Jokic's hit. A stretcher was brought on the floor for Morris, who remained on the floor for a substantial period of time.
He eventually returned to the locker room, walking away gingerly without the stretcher. There's no update on Morris' condition other than what was shared by the Heat.
Markieff Morris has walked to the locker room with an apparent neck injury. We will provide an update on his status when we receive it.- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) November 9, 2021
Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra - the only team representative to hold a postgame interview as the players were being made available to media - later provided an update on Morris.
"He's moving around in the locker room right now. We'll do the necessary tests and do what we need to do make sure he's ok."
The altercation takes away from the fact that the Nuggets without Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. comfortably beat the Heat (113-96), a team that had lost just twice in their nine previous games.
Jokic's triple-double of 25 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists along with two steals and two blocks certainly played a huge role.
Meanwhile, this is the second time in three games that the Heat were restricted to under 100 points. This is the first of a five-game Western Conference road trip for Miami, which faces the Lakers, Clippers and the Jazz in the next five days.