News outlets highlighted that Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James received his first suspension in his 19-year NBA career.

But while he got a one-game suspension, Detroit PistonsIsaiah Stewart received a two-game penalty.

Aside from the suspensions, James will lose $284,004 of his salary while Stewart will forfeit $45,201.

That’s chump change for the four-time NBA champion.

Meanwhile, it’s fair that Stewart got the heavier punishment because he chased James even though his teammates and the Pistons coaches were already pacifying him.

However, the penalty for both players was too light if the NBA truly did not condone violence.

Therefore, Commissioner Adam Silver should have given James and Stewart heavier punishment.

Instead, James got away with a light sanction.

One-Game Suspension For James

Regardless of how the fight blew up, James started the altercation by elbowing Stewart.

Perhaps the second-year player from Washington got under his skin because of his hard-nosed style of play.

That said, James saw the opportunity to retaliate via an elbow when they were jockeying for a rebound in the third quarter.

Stewart kept on charging James even if blood was streaming down his face.

The entire incident had Malice at the Palace feels, but cooler heads prevailed.

The venue announcer explicitly told the crowd to refrain from going to the court to prevent the situation from going out of control.

But going back to the act that started the melee, James should get more than a one-game suspension because the ball was nowhere near them.

Therefore, he cannot argue that he unleashed the elbow to possess the ball.

It was a clean hit intended for Stewart and James meant to inflict harm.

He should get a two-game suspension because his elbow landed squarely.

If it didn’t, that’s the time a one-game penalty makes sense.

Could it be because he’s a big crowd draw that the league can’t afford to lose him?

Weird Motivation

In a twisted way, James brought out the fight from his teammates because they were trailing before the incident.

The Pistons were up by 11 points when all hell broke loose, but the Lakers managed to win the game and improve to 9-9.

If that’s the incident that helped the Lakers turn their season around, then they have to thank James for waking them up.

However, it’s not impressive for a team like the Lakers to defeat the Pistons because that’s how the game must end.

Los Angeles has a better roster compared to the rebuilding Pistons.

It would be more shocking if Detroit ended up winning sans Stewart.

Unfortunately, the Lakers might fall under .500 again because the New York Knicks are their next opponent.

Tom Thibodeau’s squad does not back down from any challenge, and Los Angeles will have their hands full.

But that game serves as a prelude to the Lakers-Pistons rematch on Sunday.

James and Stewart are both eligible to play by then after serving their suspensions.

Will there be fireworks again, or will the two men keep it together?

If another altercation happens between the two, heftier penalties are in line.

This article first appeared on The Cold Wire and was syndicated with permission.

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