Lakers’ Markieff Morris, Rockets’ DeMarcus Cousins Fined

Los Angeles Lakers forward Markieff Morris and Houston Rockets center DeMarcus Cousins have been punished by the NBA for their ejections from Sunday night’s game. Morris was fined $35,000 and Cousins received a $10,000 fine.

Neither player was suspended, leaving both available for Tuesday’s rematch.

Morris was ejected following an altercation with Cousins. In that scuffle, Cousins shoved Morris after what he perceived to be a hard foul on his Rockets teammate. That led to an even greater retaliation from Morris as the Lakers forward received a technical foul and a Flagrant 1 penalty for the exchange, resulting in an immediate ejection.

Cousins received just a technical and was allowed to continue playing. However, he was then removed from the game a few minutes later after a hard foul on LeBron James resulted in a Flagrant 2 penalty. During the game, both P.J. Tucker and Alex Caruso received separate technical fouls.

Neither Morris nor Cousins received too hefty of a punishment from the league, likely due to the fact that there was no punches thrown or anything of that nature.

“Everyone — Markieff even said it to him as well — everyone is genuinely happy to see him back on the floor,” Anthony Davis said of Cousins. “He’s a guy who’s a great talent and also a nice guy off the floor. Guys are happy.

“Especially being his teammate last year, and me personally in New Orleans for a couple years, guys are happy to see him back on the floor and playing a game that he loves. Even though that situation happened with him and Smoove, I think they squashed it. Those two guys know each other, they’re cool. It was just an emotional play that happened.

“It’s always fun going against your former team. This was a game that he wanted to play well. I loved seeing him back on the floor. H’s been hit with eh injury bug for the last couple years and now he’s got an opportunity to be his old self.”

Frank Vogel calls win over Rockets an identity win

Despite the ejections from Morris and Cousins, the Lakers put their foot down and played one of the best games of the season. Lakers head coach Frank Vogel referred to the blowout as the type of game that was symbolic of his team’s identity.

“This game, as much as any throughout the year, was a Laker basketball type of win,” Vogel said. “Flying around defensively, getting stops without fouls, either forcing turnovers or forcing misses, and then flying on the break. It was sort of an identity win.”

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