Sports

Kings’ Sabonis suspended 1 game for contacting referee

NEW YORK (AP) — The NBA suspended Sacramento Kings center Domantas Sabonis for one game without pay on Wednesday for aggressively confronting and contacting an official who called him out for a technical foul.

Sabonis was ejected in the fourth quarter of Monday night’s game against the New York Knicks after receiving a technical double knock.

The first was for an unsportsmanlike reaction to a flagged foul. He then “walked over and punched the official in a hostile manner,” the league said, which led to the second technical and his ejection.

The Kings said in a statement that they disagreed with the suspension.

“He is a consummate professional and the ultimate competitor,” the team said. “We support Domas, and he has our full support.”

Sabonis had 19 points and 13 rebounds for the Kings in the 131-115 loss. The Knicks rallied from a 20-point deficit.

“It was just a frustrating game,” Sabonis said afterwards. “We keep playing those leads the right way and we just can’t get out in the second half and keep it going.”

Sabonis will serve his suspension Wednesday night when the Kings host the Denver Nuggets. He’s averaging 17.4 points, 12.8 rebounds and 5.9 assists in 11 games for Sacramento since acquiring the Indiana Pacers before the trade deadline.

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