All of the details are still coming in from China after the Georgetown University Men’s Basketball team’s alleged melee with the Bayi Rockets. One of the most detailed accounts available right now comes from a Hoya fan’s posting on the Hoya Talk message board.
The fan, while admittedly biased toward the Hoyas’ perspective, said that the brawl was largely a result of “comically” uneven officiating that whistled Georgetown for fouls on nearly every Bayi possession while calling nearly nothing on the host club.
After a couple of small shoving matches early in the game, things apparently got out of control in the final period:
“Two minutes into the fourth, [the Rockets] were pressing full court, trapped one of our guards (I forget who it was), and then must have pushed or punched him on the ground after he made the outlet pass, because then there was a shoving match and then a bit of a fight, and then the whole thing set off. He tried to get away as quickly as possible as the Chinese players sort of converged on him, and then benches cleared, and then people on the Chinese bench started picking up chairs. Everyone on the other side of the court started fighting as well. Brawl spread all over the court, and then off the court. After it kicked off it immediately became possible for the crowd to get involved, and then they did. As we tried to get the team off the court, bottles (plastic ones, thankfully) came out of the crowd at the team and everyone left.”
The fan also had this to say in Georgetown’s defense:
“This was really not our fault. The refs completely failed to control the game, and these things happen when they can continue to maul us underneath with no consequences. The coaching staff called the whole team over at several times during the game and calmed everyone down. We didn’t throw any punches and players and coaches were generally just laughing at the absurdity of the officiating at times.”
A very diplomatic Georgetown head coach John Thompson III had this to say after the brawl:
“Tonight, two great teams played a very competitive game that unfortunately ended after heated exchanges with both teams. We sincerely regret that this situation occurred. We remain grateful for the opportunity our student-athletes are having to engage in a sport they love here in China, while strengthening their understanding of a nation we respect and admire at G’town University.”
If all that’s too much information, this picture pretty much sums it up.