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CJ McCollum Suspended for Opening Night

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The NBA has suspended Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum for opening night after he left the bench during a preseason altercation.

NBA: Preseason-Phoenix Suns at Portland Trail Blazers Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA has suspended Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum for the season opener against the Phoenix Suns on Wednesday night, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted early Saturday:

McCollum left the bench in the scuffle between Blazers big man Caleb Swanigan and Suns center Alex Len last Wednesday night in the Blazers’ 113-104 victory.

CLNS Media’s Clevis Murray came through with the video:

NBA.com has posted its own video of the incident here, in which McCollum can indeed be seen briefly entering the court from the bench before he was held back by Geoff Clark, the team’s head athletic trainer.

Trail Blazers team beat reporter Casey Holdahl provided details about the financial ramifications of the suspension for the fifth-year guard:

Update: Casey uncovered the actual amount McCollum will be fined for based on the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement:

In this instance, the fine will total about $165,000—most of which will be donated to organizations like the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and UNICEF, reported CNN Money earlier this year.

McCollum, 26, has been suspended before under interesting circumstances. Back in January 2016, he missed a game due to a clerical error that Clippers coach Doc Rivers insisted on enforcing when Blazers coach Terry Stotts forgot to enter McCollum’s name on the pregame active list required by the NBA.

McCollum will be back on the court for the Blazers on Friday night against the Pacers in Indiana.

The 6’3” wing apologized to fans on Saturday for the incident:

The full apology was posted on ESPN.com by Wojnarowski, and reads:

"I've been in the league way too long to have a mental lapse like that. I want to apologize to my teammates and the organization for putting our team in this situation. The Western Conference is already tough enough as it is. It won't happen again. Lesson learned. I take full responsibility for those eight expensive and costly steps."