Hassan Whiteside’s quote game is becoming as vigorous as his rebounding.
After dropping 17 points — most coming off violent dunks on the head of Alex Len — and 10 rebounds in an eventual 115-98 thrashing of the visiting Suns, he was ejected late in the third quarter after retaliating in a scuffle started by the Suns center, but possibly instigated by Whiteside’s taunting throughout the game.
The moment came after Whiteside deployed another thunderous stuffer in Len’s not-so-personal space to give Miami a 77-65 lead with 4:26 remaining in the third.
“It was the fourth or fifth time I dunked on [Len] and I could tell he was frustrated,” Whiteside said, acknowledging he should’ve restrained himself but said Len was mad “because I just kept dunking on him.”
“I realize a lot more teams are being really physical with me and I’m down for it. That’s what I lift weights for.”
The entertaining Whiteside is coming off a monstrous February, averaging 14.5 points, 13.2 rebounds and 2.5 blocks while shooting 61 percent from the field. He’s scored in double figures in each of his last eight games and registered double-doubles in six of them.
Both Whiteside and Len could face further disciplinary action on Tuesday in the form of a fine and/or suspension.
The Heat face the pitiful Lakers in Miami on Wednesday.
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