First, Delonte West got a stern talking-to from his coach about the wet willy he delivered to the right ear of Gordon Hayward on Monday night.
Then, he got a bill from the NBA, which fined him $25,000 for the intrusive digit. There was, however, no suspension.
“I made it clear to him that that's unacceptable,” Dallas Mavericks Coach Rick Carlisle said (via ESPN Dallas) on Wednesday. “He's a competitive guy. But your competitiveness has to manifest in the right way. By and large, he's had a tremendous year for us. And he's done the right things. I see that as an isolated incident and I don't see it happening again.”
The Mavericks lost to the Jazz in triple overtime and West was assessed a technical. “I'm never going to do anything to take competitiveness away from anybody,” Carlisle said. “But in a situation like that, where a competitive advantage is gained by the other team, that's logic enough to stay away from it. And he understands.”
West had called it a heat-of-battle decision and said he knew he might be fined. “If they do, they do. If they don't, they don't.”
Well, they certainly did. Is 25 grand too much to pay for such a childish gesture?