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Rugged Rocket slapped $25K fine

HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 02: Dillon Brooks #9 of the Houston Rockets poses for a portrait during 2023-24 NBA Media Day on October 2, 2023 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2023 NBAE Logan Riely/NBAE via Getty Images/AFP (Photo by Logan Riely / NBAE / Getty Images / Getty Images via AFP)

NEW YORK (AFP) — Houston Rockets swingman Dillon Brooks was fined $25,000 by the National Basketball Association on Thursday for striking Indiana Pacers center Daniel Theis in the groin in a home pre-season victory on Tuesday.

The league said Brooks “recklessly making contact” with Theis with his left hand while moving around a pick in the first quarter, a blow that left Germany’s Theis doubled over.

Brooks was assessed a flagrant foul 2 on the play and ejected with 4:33 elapsed in the first period of Houston’s 122-103 triumph over the Pacers.

Brooks, who led the NBA in technical fouls last season, said after the game he felt “picked on” by referees over his reputation, the 27-year-old Canadian calling himself “Dillon the Villain” over previous misdeeds.

In last season’s playoffs, Brooks — then playing for Memphis — landed a left hand to the groin of LeBron James while the Los Angeles Lakers star was dribbling the ball only 17 seconds into the third quarter of game three, sending the four-time NBA Most Valuable Player to the court in pain and earning an ejection for a flagrant foul 2.

Memphis lost to the Lakers in six games and Brooks, who had ripped James for being “old” at 38, was traded from the Grizzlies to Houston last July.

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