The Toronto Raptors have been dealt another blow.
Fred VanVleet and DeAndre Bembry have been suspended one game, while forward OG Anunoby was fined US$30,000 for a recent on-court altercation.
The loss of VanVleet and Bembry is more bad news for the reeling Raptors (20-31), who’ve lost seven of their last 10 games amid COVID-19 player absences.
— Fred VanVleet (@FredVanVleet) April 8, 2021
Bembry was scheduled to serve his suspension Thursday when the Raptors played host to the Chicago Bulls.
VanVleet, who’s missed the past two games with a hip injury, must serve his suspension in the next regular-season game for which he’s eligible and physically able to play.
The incident occurred late in the first quarter of the Los Angeles Lakers’ 110-101 win over Toronto on Tuesday at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla.
Anunoby received a technical foul and was ejected after grabbing Dennis Schroder by the leg and “recklessly flipping him to the ground after the two became entangled following a common foul committed by Schroder,” the NBA said in a statement.
Bembry and VanVleet were suspended for leaving the bench.
Lakers guard Talen Horton-Tucker received a one-game suspension, while Montrezl Harrell was fined USandre$20,000 for entering the altercation and shoving Raptors guard Gary Trent Jr.
The Raptors are 11th in the Eastern Conference and two games back of 10th-placed Chicago heading into their game against the Bulls.
Canadian Birch heading to Toronto?
The Raptors might be getting a little reinforcement in the form of a Canadian.
Centre/forward Khem Birch is reportedly set to join the Raptors after being placed on waivers by the Orlando Magic, according to ESPN.
The 28-year-old Birch, a native of Montreal, is averaging 5.3 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.1 assists in 19.8 minutes per game for the Magic this season.
He has started five games and will be an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.