The Lakers and the Rockets provided some late-night fireworks in the National Basketball Association on Saturday evening, as punches were thrown by players on both teams when a skirmish started late in the fourth quarter.
In a fourth-quarter wild melee that saw punches thrown on both sides, Paul was ejected along with Lakers' Rajon Rondo and Brandon Ingram.
A skirmish broke out involving a number of players, including Rajon Rondo and Chris Paul, who were seen having words face to face. Video unveiled on Sunday shows Kiedis berating Paul before turning his attention - and his middle finger - to a Houston staffer, all as bandmate and Lakers super-fan Flea sits quietly in his courtside seat. Lance Stephenson jumped in to pull Ingram away from the fight, and that's when Rondo and Paul started going at it.
"Paul has been suspended for poking at and making contact with the face of Rondo, and throwing multiple punches at him".
But Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni was not at all impressed with the verdict, strongly disagreeing with the decision to hand Paul a suspension of more than just one game. Ultimately, they also handed him an early exit for his troubles.
Although hard to see with the naked eye, video of the incident showed Rondo spitting on Paul, who responded by poking his finger into Rondo's face.
He won't be the only player missing time.
Asked if he had ever seen Paul so angry, D'Antoni said: "I've never really seen him spit on before".
"[We are] sending a clear message that this is not acceptable behaviour and you can not do this". World Peace elbowed Harden, who was then playing for Oklahoma City, in a game also at Staples Center to earn that penalty, the irony being Harden is the one who Ingram fouled to start Saturday's fracas.
The extraordinary scenes overshadowed LeBron James's home debut with the Lakers, which ended in a 124-115 Rockets victory.
- Rondo spit on a guy. "We'll be fine. I just don't think it's equitable". I understand that. We'll go on.