LeBron James and Isaiah Stewart suspended over bloody NBA melee

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LeBron James and Isaiah Stewart, pictured here after the wild melee.
LeBron James and Isaiah Stewart have both been suspended. Image: Getty

LeBron James and Isaiah Stewart have both been suspended for their roles in a bloody melee during the Lakers' clash with the Pistons on Sunday.

The NBA announced on Monday that James has been suspended one game without pay, while Stewart is banned for two games without pay.

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James will miss Tuesday's nationally televised game against the New York Knicks, while Stewart will miss Tuesday's home game against the Miami Heat and Wednesday's game at the Milwaukee Bucks

James and Stewart were both ejected after a wild melee early in the second half of the Lakers' 121-116 victory in Detroit.

Stewart suffered a large cut near his right eye after getting hit in the face by James while battling for position on a free throw during the third quarter.

Stewart was left with a big gash on his face with blood pouring out of it as he angrily tried to get to James for revenge.

It took a number of players and officials to restrain Stewart as the incensed centre repeatedly tried to approach James on the court.

Stewart could also be seen rushing off court towards the locker rooms after being ejected in an apparent attempt to catch up with James.

While opinion remains heavily divided about whether or not James intentionally struck Stewart in the face, details have since emerged about the Lakers superstar's attempts to apologise.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, James attempted to get Stewart's phone number to reach out to his 20-year-old rival after the game.

LeBron James, pictured here leaving the court after being ejected.
LeBron James leaves the court after being ejected. (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)

Anthony Davis defends LeBron James

All parties were relieved that an all-out melee wasn't witnessed as it was on November 19, 2004, when the Pistons and Indiana Pacers had a brawl that spilled into the stands.

The infamous fight known as the Malice at the Palace will go down as one of the most shocking moments in US sporting history as players entered the stands to fight fans and fans invaded the court to fight players.

Lakers forward Anthony Davis said it was an unintentional act by James.

"Stewart tried to get physical with LeBron and LeBron did the same thing," Davis said. 

"Everybody in the league knows LeBron's not a dirty guy. As soon as he did it, he looked back at him and said, 'Oh, my bad, I didn't try to do it.'

Isaiah Stewart, pictured here having to be restrained as he attempted to get back at LeBron James.
Isaiah Stewart had to be restrained as he attempted to get back at LeBron James. (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)

"I don't (know) what (Stewart) was trying to do. ... I've never seen a player try to do that since I've been playing. 

"I know we've seen it before (back) in the day. That was uncalled for. You got a cut above your eye, accidentally, it wasn't on purpose. 

"We weren't going to allow him to keep charging our brother like that.

"Everybody did a great job trying to deescalate the situation. You never want it to get to that point like 17 years ago."

Pistons coach Dwane Casey said that Stewart received eight to nine stitches to repair the gash. 

He also said he shouldn't be disciplined by the league.

"He was upset," Casey said. "He shouldn't be facing anything."

with AAP

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