Lakers vs. Suns: Anthony Davis receives flagrant foul for kicking Jae Crowder in groin on jumper

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Game 1 between the Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers was contentious at times, as Cameron Payne was ejected after a dust-up with Alex Caruso and Chris Paul’s box out caused a hard foul for LeBron James. It didn’t take long for the drama to start on Tuesday night in Game 2.

Less than a minute into the first quarter, Anthony Davis faced up against Jae Crowder in the mid-post and rose up for a fadeaway jumper. Crowder reached in and fouled him on the arm as he went up for the shot, but the Suns forward ended up getting the worst of the interaction. That’s because Davis’ leg kicked out and got Crowder right in the groin. 

Crowder crumpled to the ground in obvious pain, and the referees went to the monitor to review the play. After watching the replay and deliberating amongst themselves for a few minutes, they decided to uphold the initial foul on Crowder and assess a Flagrant 1 on Davis for making unnecessary contact to Crowder’s groin. 

While Davis’ kick out seemed unintentional, the rules on flagrant fouls don’t take intent into account. Crowder briefly stayed in the game to shoot the free throws for the flagrant, but then made his way to the bench. That was due to the fact that he had two fouls, however, and not because of any injury from the blow. 

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This is the second straight postseason that Davis has been assessed a flagrant foul for a strike to the groin. Last season in the bubble, he was retroactively given a flagrant by the league after they reviewed him hitting Jeff Green on a drive to the basket during the Lakers’ second-round series with the Rockets. 

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