Nuggets star Jamal Murray takes ‘full responsibility’ for throwing heat pack, towel on court in Game 2 loss


Denver Nuggets star Jamal Murray is clearly ready to put his heat pack incident behind him.

Murray took “full responsibility” for throwing a heat pack and a towel on the court in the middle of his team’s Game 2 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday, which earned him a $100,000 fine from the league. Murray didn’t get into it much, and he didn’t technically apologize for his actions, but he made it clear that he’s trying to move on.

“I mean, it is what it is, and I take everything in full responsibility, so on to the next,” Murray said Wednesday, via ESPN. “Yeah, on to the next. I mean, two days ago, [there’s] not much for me to say about it right now.”

With less than five minutes left in the first half of the Timberwolves’ 106-80 win over the Nuggets on Monday, Murray threw a heat pack onto the court from the bench in frustration after a Timberwolves bucket. Minnesota star Karl-Anthony Towns made a layup with the heat pack on the floor, and Denver’s Kentavious Caldwell-Pope ended up removing the heat pack from the court before he ran back to the other end.

Just before the heat pack toss, Murray threw a towel toward official Marc Davis near the baseline. The towel landed just behind Davis’ feet, but he didn’t notice.

Murray was fined $100,000 by the league for “throwing multiple objects in the direction of a game official during live play.” He was not suspended.

“I didn’t actually see it happen,” Timberwolves head coach Chris Finch said after the game. “And the way it was explained to me, the referees didn’t see it, either. So they’re not able to issue a technical unless they see it … It’s inexcusable and dangerous. I’m sure it was just a mistake and an oversight. I’m sure there was nothing intentional by the officiating at all. But certainly can’t allow that to happen.”

Jamal Murray was fined $100,000 by the league this week for throwing things onto the court in the Nuggets' loss to the Timberwolves on Monday. (AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post)Jamal Murray was fined $100,000 by the league this week for throwing things onto the court in the Nuggets' loss to the Timberwolves on Monday. (AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post)

Jamal Murray was fined $100,000 by the league this week for throwing things onto the court in the Nuggets’ loss to the Timberwolves on Monday. (AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post)

Murray didn’t address the incident until Wednesday. He finished with eight points and shot just 3-of-18 from the floor in the Game 2 loss, which dropped the Nuggets to 0-2 in the Western Conference semifinals series.

Murray has averaged 21.2 points and 6.5 assists per game this season. The 27-year-old had 17 points and four assists in Denver’s Game 1 loss to Minnesota, and he averaged just shy of 24 points per game in their opening-round win over the Los Angeles Lakers.

“I’ve never seen that from Jamal,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone said, via ESPN. “That was very uncharacteristic. So when you put it all in the boiling pot, that’s a lot to handle. And he didn’t handle it the way he knows he needs to handle it, and I’m sure he told you guys that.”

Game 3 of the series is set for Friday in Minneapolis. The Timberwolves have yet to lose in the postseason. They swept the Phoenix Suns in the first round, and they’ve won all six of their playoff games by double digits.

“We’ve just got to be ready to play and not get frustrated with how the game goes sometimes and we allowed it to take us out of our game,” Murray said. “So we’ve just got to stay composed and find a way to stick together during the game and figure it out. No matter what the scoreboard says, we’ve got to be able to claw back.”





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