© St. Petersburg Times, published December 22, 2002
NEW YORK -- Bonzi Wells drew a two-game suspension from the league for fighting at the end of Friday's Portland-Golden State game, and Rasheed Wallace was fined $15,000 for attempting to go into the stands.
Wells' suspension began with Portland's home game Saturday night against Seattle. He also will miss Friday's game against Utah.
Penalties for the Golden State players who took part in the altercation are expected to be announced today. Wells was punished for throwing a punch at Chris Mills, who reportedly tried to get into the Blazers locker room but was restrained.
Later, as the Blazers' bus tried to leave the arena, Mills parked his car in front of it, got out with several friends and challenged the Blazers, the Oregonian newspaper reported. The bus was unable to leave until Oakland police arrived to provide an escort.
"I've never seen anything like that, that's for sure. I've never seen a guy do anything like that," Portland coach Maurice Cheeks said. "That can be kind of scary, because you don't know what's going through a guy's mind."
The brawl started seconds after Wallace made a buzzer-beating jump shot to give Portland a 113-111 road victory.
Wells and Mills battled for position and were tied up after Wallace's shot went through. As the two exchanged words and began pushing, Warrior Troy Murphy entered the fray and threw punches.
The situation was made worse by fans throwing wads of gum and plastic beer bottles at the Blazers as they headed for the locker room. One man was handcuffed and subdued by four security officers. He had thrown gum at Wallace, sparking another confrontation with several Blazers.
SHAQ A MOTIVATOR? After freezing out the media for almost two weeks, Shaquille O'Neal told the Los Angeles Times he was trying to motivate the team with harsh public comments about teammates.
"When I make my guys mad, they usually respond," O'Neal told the Los Angeles Times before the Lakers fell Friday night in overtime to the 76ers.
The Lakers are 10-18 and last in the Pacific Division. O'Neal admitted the three-time defending champions are not pleased. As for his possibly damaging remarks about teammates, O'Neal said they would get over it.
HAWKS 79, 76ERS 77: Shareef Abdur-Rahim scored 28 to lead host Atlanta. Philadelphia had two chances to tie it, but Eric Snow missed a driving layup, and Keith Van Horn rimmed out a 15-footer before the buzzer. Atlanta's Emanual Davis tore his right Achilles' tendon midway through the second and will miss 6-8 months
NETS 100, PISTONS 92: Jason Kidd had 27 points, 12 assists and five steals to lead host New Jersey. Richard Jefferson added 19 points as the Nets ended the Pistons' season-high six-game winning streak. Ben Wallace had 11 points and 14 rebounds for Detroit.
WOLVES 98, ROCKETS 86: Kevin Garnett had 27 points, 11 rebounds and five assists for host Minnesota. Garnett combined with Gary Trent for 16 points in the fourth as the Timberwolves used a 16-7 run over the final 8:47 to seal it. Steve Francis led the Rockets with 24 points.
SPURS 92, WIZARDS 81: Tony Parker scored 21, including back-to-back 3s in the final minutes, to lift host San Antonio. The Spurs trailed by 10 at the half but made 22-of-36 to snap Washington's three-game winning streak.
BULLS 110, PACERS 103: Jalen Rose scored all but three of his 28 in the fourth to lead host Chicago. Brad Miller led Indiana with 26 points and 13 rebounds.
SUNS 110, KINGS 101: Shawn Marion and Stephon Marbury scored 28 each for host Phoenix, negating Chris Webber's first triple double in almost two years. Webber had 29 points, 15 rebounds and 11 assists.
BUCKS 94, KNICKS 90: Sam Cassell scored 25, including two key jump shots in the closing seconds, for host Milwaukee. Allan Houston led the Knicks with 17 points.