Hawks rookie Taurean Prince was fined $25,000 for forcefully pulling down the Heat’s Hassan Whiteside during Wednesday’s game, it was announced by Kiki VanDeWeghe, the NBA’s Executive Vice Preside of Basketball Operations. on Friday.
In addition, the Heat’s James Johnson was fined 25,000 for escalating the situation in retaliation with by throwing a forearm into the chest of Prince. Johnson rushed Prince immediately after the play. He confronted Prince again after the teams had to be separated.
The incident occurred with 5:53 remaining in the Heat’s 116-93 victory in Miami. After a review of the play, Prince was assessed a Flagrant Foul 2 and ejected. Johnson was assessed a technical foul and ejected. The Heat’s Dion Waiters was also assessed a technical foul.
“I wasn’t trying to wrap him up at all,” Prince told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution when asked about getting his arm around Whiteside. “Yeah, it is what it is. It was unintentional. They made it more than what it is. Stuff happens. It’s the game of basketball. Everything is not perfect.”
The NBA reviews all flagrant fouls. Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said as of Thursday night the team had not heard from the league about additional punishment. The ruling came down Friday afternoon.
Following the incident, Budenholzer said Prince did not mean to injure Whiteside.
“It did not look good,” Budenholzer said after the game. “Unfortunately for Hassan Whiteside it’s a tough, bad fall. I think Taurean is just trying to wrap him up and not let him get an and-one. It ended up looking, and probably deservedly so, but there was nothing intentional, dirty or ugly. We hope Whiteside is fine. Taurean, wrapping up a guy is important and hopefully he can do it without that kind of fall.”