Americans want to punish Boomers over wild brawl
AMERICAN breakfast TV took time away from the free agency madness of LeBron James and DeMarcus Cousins to focus on the incredible scenes of the brawl between Australia and Philippines.
ESPN breakfast hosts Michelle Beadle and NBA great Jalen Rose told the network's breakfast show Get Up that the league must take action against Milwaukee Bucks star Thon Maker after he was spotted attacking Philippines players with flying leg kicks while trying to protect his Boomers teammates.
Maker on Tuesday took to social media to apologise for his role in the madness between the two teams during the FIBA World Cup qualifying match.
Basketball's governing body FIBA has already said it would announce its disciplinary action against the players and officials involved in coming days.
NBA commentators are now calling for the league to take further action against the Bucks star.
"It's fascinating video because normally we see NBA players get into altercations at some point you understand that we're actually here to play basketball and when it starts to get about fisty-cuffs, that's when players lose their discipline," Rose said.
"And we see this here and for Thon Maker, it's going to put (NBA commissioner) Adam Silver in a unique spot because it didn't happen in the NBA, it didn't happen in the United States, but he's got to be disciplined.
"That's something the Commissioner's office is going to rule on swift, fast and in a hurry. I appreciate his apology.
I also appreciate - now, I'm not promoting fighting at all - but he did something that was unique that I was paying attention to. You notice he wasn't throwing his hands because he knows how valuable they are to him making money in the NBA. So he did a couple of Bruce Lee kicks and then got up out of there."
Beadle responded by saying she was particularly upset by the reaction from the Philippines team.
"I don't want to see people fighting in general. This turned into a street fight very, very quickly.
"What bothered me the most was that the Philippines team, not only did they not stop, at one point there was one guy pummelling an Australian guy on the ground, but then they started taking selfies on the court while the refs were trying to figure out what they were going to do next after the melees.
"I don't know how international basketball works. I don't know if you ban a country from playing for the next couple of tournaments, but the fact that they showed zero remorse and not only that, they seemed to be celebrating what was a pretty ugly circumstance. It just turned me off the whole thing."
The comments from the ESPN duo were among the most scathing of Maker as America reacted to the confronting vision on Tuesday.
The New York Post reported Maker attempted "flying kicks" as a "wild basketball brawl broke out".
CBS Sports' Kevin Skiver reported Maker's flying kick "didn't exactly land" while describing the brawl as "a fight with a little bit of everything".
Milwaukee's Journal-Sentinel newspaper reported every action of Maker's during the brawl.
"From there, punches and chairs were thrown as players and spectators got involved in a brawl that spilled off the court," Journal-Sentinel reporter Matt Velazquez wrote.
"Milwaukee Bucks centre Thon Maker, in just his second game playing with the national team, was in the middle of the fracas, flying into the fray to defend his teammates and try to break things up with his body.
"After toppling a pile, Maker was punched in the back of the head by Terrence Bill Romeo of the Philippines. Maker responded by charging at Romeo and kicking at him with his left leg. The kick did not connect - it's unclear if Maker intended to inflict damage - and Maker kept his momentum moving away from the fight."
TMZ reported the story with a headline "VIOLENCE! VIOLENCE! VIOLENCE!"
"Milwaukee Bucks player Thon Maker threw flying knees and kicks in a crazy brawl during an international basketball game today ... and that was just the beginning," the website reported.
"Maker was playing for the Australian national team -- taking the Philippines -- when things got extremely chippy between the two squads.
"Punches starting flying ... and so did Maker -- as the 7'1", 223 pounder took flight to try and land some shots."