NEW YORK – New York Knicks forward Julius Randle was fined $50,000 by the NBA on Sunday for shoving Phoenix Suns forward Cam Johnson, making contact with a referee who was trying to break up the altercation and refusing to participate in its ensuing investigation.
Randle and Johnson were both called for technical fouls after bumping chests and exchanging words in the third quarter of a wild 115-114 victory by the Suns over the Knicks on Friday night. A referee separated the two, but then Randle barreled through the ref to shove Johnson again, which earned the ejection.
Johnson responded with a brilliant fourth quarter, banking in a 3-pointer at the buzzer to finish with a career-high 38 points. His ninth 3-pointer in 12 tries came from 31 feet at the top of the key, capping a 21-point fourth quarter that included six 3s.
The Knicks looked like they were headed for an impressive road win before Randle’s ill-timed outburst late in the third quarter sent him to the locker room. Instead, New York blew a 14-point lead in Randle’s absence and dropped its seventh straight game.
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