'Terrible action': NBA MVP ejected after heated exchange

Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo is pictured headbutting Washington Wizards forward Mo Wagner.

Giannis Antetokounmpo’s return to the court after dental surgery didn’t last long.

Antetokounmpo was ejected early in the second quarter of the Milwaukee Bucks’ 126-113 win against the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night after he got into it with Moritz Wagner.

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The reigning league MVP was called for an offensive foul minutes into the second quarter after he dropped his shoulder into Wagner — something that followed a contentious rebound exchange on the other end.

He then started talking to Wagner after the play and ended up head-butting him, which quickly earned the Bucks superstar a Flagrant 2 foul and an ejection.

“Terrible action,” Antetokounmpo said after the game.

“If I could go back, turn back time and go back to that play, I wouldn’t do it.

“But at the end of the day, we’re all human. We all make mistakes.”

He said he didn’t think he was frustrated with Wagner specifically, but rather it was the “whole build up” of plays that set him off.

The move didn’t sit well with Wizards star Bradley Beal, who tweeted quickly after the incident.

Beal is not participating in the season restart while dealing with a right shoulder injury.

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The Bucks have already secured the top seed in the Eastern Conference, and will take on the Orlando Magic in the first round of the playoffs following their final seeding game on Thursday.

It’s unclear what punishment the league will hand down after the ejection on Tuesday night, however anything more than a one-game suspension would mean the Bucks will have to enter the playoffs without the reigning league MVP.

Giannis Antetokounmpo is pictured handling the ball in an NBA game against the Washington Wizards.
Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo has put together another MVP calibre season after winning the award in 2019. (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)

Washington coach Scott Brooks said it was a ‘strange’ exchange, but added that he had respect for Antetokounmpo but it was ultimately an ‘unfortunate’ incident.

That was a very strange few seconds,” Brooks said, via The Athletic’s Fred Katz.

“I thought Moe stepped in and took a charge. That’s what you have to do ... A few seconds later, he got a head-butt.

“There’s no place for that. Giannis, I have a lot of respect (for) ... It’s unfortunate that it happened.”