Tensions ignited by an on-court shove Monday carried onto social media on Tuesday between the Morris and Jokic brothers.
Denver Nuggets center and reigning NBA MVP Nikola Jokic was ejected from Monday’s game against the Miami Heat after a retaliatory shove to the back of Miami’s Markieff Morris. Jokic took exception to a hard foul by Morris near midcourt that officials ruled a flagrant 2 upon review. Morris body checked Jokic and elbowed him in the ribs, then walked away before Jokic chased him down from behind and shoved him to the court.
Players from both teams met at midcourt as Heat forward Jimmy Butler shouted toward the Nuggets bench. After the game, Morris’ twin brother and Los Angeles Clippers forward Marcus Morris tweeted his thoughts with a suggestion that he’d keep the incident in mind moving forward.
The Clippers and Nuggets next play on Dec. 26 in Los Angeles.
Jokic’s brothers Strahinja and Nemanja don’t play NBA basketball. But they were in the stands for Monday’s game. And they were on social media Tuesday to respond to Marcus. They let Marcus know they were ready whenever he was.
The Denver Post reports that the tweet indeed came from Strahinja and Nemanja. They apparently created the account early Tuesday just to respond to Marcus. They got Marcus’ attention, and the accounts continued to trade barbs Tuesday afternoon.
Marcus then shared his thoughts on Fox Sports’ Shannon Sharpe’s take that Nikola was right to defend himself before apparently signing off at the behest of his mother.
Markieff, meanwhile appeared to be taking it all in stride on Tuesday.
Nikola is not on Twitter and hadn’t been heard from publicly as of Tuesday afternoon since his postgame comments Monday night.
“It’s a stupid play,” Jokic told reporters. “I feel bad. I am not supposed to react that way.”
He also clarified that he thought Markieff’s foul was “dirty.”
“I think it was a dirty play,” Jokic continued. “And I just needed to protect myself. I felt bad, I am not supposed to react that way, but I need to protect myself.”
It all adds up to ongoing beef between the Nuggets and Heat. Butler was animated in the immediate aftermath of the incident.
He waited alongside other Heat players outside the visitors locker room at Ball Arena after the game, which is just steps away from the Nuggets locker room.
The rematch is just a few weeks away with the Heat and Nuggets scheduled to play in Miami on Nov. 29. Will Strahinja and Nemanja make the trip? They appear to be courtside regulars at Nikola’s games.
Like their brother, they are very large men. And Nemanja is a Muay Thai fighter.
None of the men involved appear to have much backdown. Stay tuned.
The shove that started it all. (AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post via Getty Images)