ATHENS (Reuters) - Serbian basketball player Nenad Krstic was arrested but released without bail after a mass brawl caused a game against Greece to be abandoned, police said on Friday.
The 27-year-old, who plays for the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder, was alleged to have hit Yiannis Bourousis with a chair as the Greek player tried to break up a fight during the Acropolis Tournament final in Athens on Thursday.
Police said Krstic was charged with causing bodily harm but this was a misdemeanour offence under Greek law, normally punishable with a fine.
“I was appalled to see the disgraceful scenes that occurred during the game. They were an awful stain on the good name of world basketball,” said Patrick Baumann, general secretary of the sport’s governing body FIBA.
“FIBA will take whatever steps are necessary against any individual player found to have been involved in this shocking incident,” Baumann told the organisation’s official website (www.fiba.com).
With the world championship starting on Aug. 28 in Turkey, Greece and Serbia will be concerned about the possibility that certain players may be prevented from taking part.
”FIBA ... is now urgently reviewing last night’s game and the circumstances leading to the violence,“ added Baumann. ”FIBA will not be commenting on the actions of any individual player ahead of that review being completed.
“However FIBA wishes to make it clear it will not hesitate from taking the strongest possible action against any individual found to have brought the sport of basketball into disrepute.”
Greece forward Kostas Tsartsaris apologised for the incident at the Olympic Indoor Hall.
“Sorry to everyone from all over the world who attended the game because these images are not in keeping with the Olympic spirit,” he told reporters.
(Editing by Barry Moody and Tony Jimenez
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