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Eleven players suspended, Pistons’ Hayes gets three games for punch vs. Magic

There were plenty of suspensions — 11 players will miss time, nine of them from the Orlando Magic — but the league didn’t come down too hard on the principles.

The Pistons’ Killian Hayes has been suspended three games for a punch that appeared to briefly knock out the Magic’s Moritz Wagner, while Wagner himself got two games for instigating the incident, and the Pistons’ Hamidou Diallo got one game for a shove that escalated a fight between the Pistons and Magic on Wednesday night, the NBA announced.

Eight other Magic players got one-game suspensions for leaving the bench during the incident (a standard punishment from the league): Cole Anthony, R.J. Hampton, Gary Harris and Kevon Harris, Admiral Schofield, Franz Wagner, Mo Bamba and Wendell Carter, Jr. Those suspensions will be staggered over a few games so the Magic will have enough players dressed to play their games.

The three-game suspension for an out-right punch seems a little light, especially compared to the one-game suspension for a shove for another player. That said, these are suspensions without pay that will hit these players in the wallet.

The incident started in the final minute of the first half when an errant Magic pass rolled into the backcourt. Both the Magic’s Moritz Wagner and the Pistons’ Hayes chased the ball down, but Wagner wanted it to roll out of bounds (if he touched it there would have been a backcourt violation), so he made the soccer-style move and tried to shield it as it rolled out of bounds. Hayes went hard for the ball and as he did Wagner hip-checked Hayes into the Pistons’ bench. That’s when the Pistons’ Diallo ran in and shoved Wagner in the back, followed by Hayes punching Wagner in the back of the head, appearing to knock him out for a second. Then the Magic players came running in to protect their guy.

At the time Hayes, Wagner and Diallo were ejected and the only question was how long their suspensions would be. It’s a little less than many expected.