Brawl mars Australia-Philippines game; Thon Maker involved in scuffle
MANILA, Philippines (AP) — FIBA has opened disciplinary hearings against Australia and the Philippines after a wild brawl that included Milwaukee Bucks forward Thon Maker broke out in their Basketball World Cup qualifying game Monday.
The fight spilled into the area behind the baseline and video showed a chair being thrown at one player. Former NBA player Andray Blatche, now playing for the Philippines, appeared to throw multiple punches, while Maker came at a Philippines player with legs flying high as it continued.
A total of 13 players were ejected after the melee that began in the third quarter of Australia’s 89-53 victory following a collision in the lane. The game continued with just three players from the Philippines.
Anthony Moore, chief executive of Australian basketball, apologized to fans in a statement, adding that “this is not the spirit in which sport should be played and certainly not in the spirit in which we aim to play basketball.”
FIBA says a decision will be announced in the coming days.