Friday, March 24, 2023

Hornets’ Miles Bridges throws mouthpiece into stands, hits fan after being ejected from play-in loss to Hawks

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The Charlotte Hornets‘ season is over, and it ended in an ignominious fashion. The Hornets were eliminated from the NBA postseason with a 132-103 loss to the Atlanta Hawks in the 9-10 Eastern Conference play-in matchup on Wednesday night after Atlanta pulled away with a huge third-quarter run.

Frustrations eventually boiled over for Hornets forward Miles Bridges, who was ejected from the game after receiving consecutive technical fouls with 6:39 remaining in the fourth quarter. Bridges had to be restrained by teammates from going after the referees, then made his way to the locker room, where he was greeted by jeering Hawks fans. As one fan appeared to wave goodbye to Bridges, he turned and fired his mouthpiece into the stands. It ended up striking a young fan in the face.

It’s hard to imagine that Bridges intended to hit the young fan with his mouth guard, but the act was irresponsible and unacceptable nonetheless. He will likely face disciplinary action from the NBA in the coming days. Bridges took responsibility for his outburst immediately after the game, tweeting a video of the incident along with the caption, “Somebody get me in contact with the young lady. That’s unacceptable.”

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Wrapping up a breakout season in which he is a top candidate for Most Improved Player, Bridges had 12 points, four assists and four rebounds on 5-for-11 shooting in just under 30 minutes in Wednesday’s loss.

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