Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Nick Young was ejected on Wednesday for throwing a punch at Phoenix Suns point guard Goran Dragic, but Dragic called it a "friendly tap" when asked about it on Thursday, via Craig Grialou of Arizona Sports 98.7 FM:
Dragic on Nick Young, "He just tapped me; a friendly tap. It was nothing seriously. I didn't even felt it. It was not a strong punch."— Craig Grialou (@CraigAZSports) January 16, 2014
There is no word yet on whether or not Young will receive any additional punishment from the league, but Dragic doesn't sound too bothered about what happened:
Dragic added about Young, "I don't blame him. It was like four #Suns jerseys over there. He was all alone. I already forgot that."— Craig Grialou (@CraigAZSports) January 16, 2014
Young, however, was upset post-game. He expressed displeasure that his teammates didn't come to his defense, but Lakers point guard Kendall Marshall correctly pointed out that Young did not need to get himself ejected when his team had only eight healthy bodies, via ESPN's Dave McMenamin:
"What I'm mad about is it was 1-on-5, I felt like," Young said. "If somebody [from the Lakers] would have got in the middle, everything wouldn't have escalated that much."
Lakers point guard Kendall Marshall put the onus on Young to show more composure.
"I understand where Nick's coming from, he did get fouled hard and it wasn't a basketball play by any means but at the same time, we got to understand our numbers [of available players on the roster] and sometimes you just got to win some and lose some," Marshall said. "I don't know if that was the smartest play at the time."