Former University of Kentucky basketball and current Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns was suspended by the NBA on Thursday for his role in an on-court fight the previous night.
On Wednesday, Towns and Philadelphia 76ers big man Joel Embiid went after each other, with Towns throwing a punch before the two wrestled each other to the court. Players from both teams ran toward the scrum to break it up and Embiid threw two punches while he and Towns were on the ground surrounded by teammates, coaches and referees.
Towns and Embiid were ejected after the altercation and both were given two-game suspensions on Thursday. Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons, who restrained Towns by laying on his back and, at one point, putting his arm around his throat, was not suspended.
The 76ers won 117-95 to improve to 4-0 on the year while the Timberwolves fell to 3-1. Towns had 13 points and six rebounds at the time of the ejections midway through the third quarter, while Embiid had 19 points and five rebounds.
Towns did not directly address the fight when asked about it after the game, saying “It’s a competitive game. As a team, we need to play better with our system. We didn’t execute our game plan,” according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “I’m disappointed in the (loss). I don’t think we played our game. We were playing a different type of basketball. It wasn’t what got us to 3-0. We can learn a lot from this game.”
Towns is averaging 27.3 points and 11.5 rebounds per game this season, while Embiid is averaging 23.3 points and 10.3 rebounds. Towns will be eligible to return for Minnesota’s game at Memphis on Wednesday, Nov. 6.