More details continue to emerge in the ugly incident between Chicago Bulls teammates Nikola Mirotic and Bobby Portis.
Veteran basketball writer Peter Vecsey reported on Wednesday that Mirotic was the aggressor in the altercation with Portis at Bulls practice this week that left him with facial fractures and a concussion after Portis punched him.
Mirotic initiated the skirmish. “He was the aggressor, not Portis,” I am informed. “Mirotic shoved Portis twice, maybe three times. When Portis retaliated with a hard shove, Mirotic charged him. Portis put him down.”
Mirotic is expected to miss a few weeks with the injuries he sustained in the fight. He will still likely end up missing more time than Portis, who would be eligible to return on Nov. 7 against the Toronto Raptors.
Charania says the altercation between the two players ended with a cheap shot to Mirotic’s face. Mirotic underwent testing and has two broken bones in his face, according to the Chicago Tribune’s K.C. Johnson. He was also evaluated for a concussion.
Mirotic, 26, has been with the Bulls the past three seasons. He has been dealing with an ankle sprain over the past week. Portis, 22, is in his third season as a reserve forward for the Bulls.
Portis and Rondo were teammates in Chicago for just one season before Rondo was waived this summer. The ex-All-Star guard has since signed with the New Orleans Pelicans, marking his fifth NBA team in less than three years.
A series of ugly public incidents have hurt the perception of Rondo in this latter stage of his career, and that was also true of his tenure with the Bulls. But through it all, Rondo has always seemed to have a strong rapport with his younger teammates, and Portis’ endorsement reaffirms as much.
The Chicago Bulls officially introduced their first-round pick on Monday, and the former Arkansas star tried to make a good first impression on the local media.
Bobby Portis, who was taken by the Bulls with the 22nd overall pick in the draft, showed up to his introductory press conference with three boxes of donuts from the world famous Stan’s Donuts in Chicago.
Bobby Portis offers dozens of donuts to anyone in the Chicago media that can beat him in a staring contest. pic.twitter.com/34BHb5eNYU
That was a unique and classy gesture from Portis. While we don’t want to doubt that he simply did it out of the goodness of his heart, it should be noted that Portis was once critical of the Bulls when he sent this tweet several years ago. Perhaps he was hoping to avoid questions about that awkward incident.
Long before they were NBA players, Larry Nance, Bobby Portis and Frank Kaminsky were just young college basketball players. And before they were drafted by their current teams, they felt comfortable saying whatever they wanted via Twitter or elsewhere. Now they may be regretting some of their old tweets.
Take for instance Nance, who was selected by the Lakers at No. 27 overall in Thursday’s draft. Once upon a time he made this Kobe Bryant rape reference on Twitter:
Think he’s going to catch Kobe’s fade when he sets foot in LA?
That’s a nice way to make up for it, but the fun doesn’t end there!
In a blog post last year where he announced he would be returning to Wisconsin for his senior season, Frank Kaminsky cited Badgers fans as a big reason for his decision. He happened to take a swipe at Charlotte Bobcats fans in the process (which he later deleted).
“I know the NBA has their crazy fans and all, but if you look at all of their games, there are games when teams like the Bobcats get hardly any fans, and it looks flat out boring,” Kaminsky wrote. “At the Kohl Center, we play in front of nearly 17,000 fans every single time we step onto the court. When we travel, we play in front of sell-out crowds who absolutely hate us. Not because of who is on the team, but because of where we go to school. Who could leave that?”
And guess who took Kaminsky No. 9 overall in the draft? The Charlotte Hornets of course.
Yup, these guys probably wish they could have these quotes/tweets back.