(Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
The Georgetown men’s basketball team’s trip for diplomacy in China took a wrong turn when a melee broke out during a game against the Bayi Military Rockets.
Thursday night, punches began flying and benches cleared as fights broke all over the court with 9 1/2 minutes remaining and the game tied in the fourth quarter. Not surprisingly, the rest of the game was cancelled.
"Tonight, two great teams played a very competitive game that unfortunately ended after heated exchanges with both teams," Georgetown coach John Thompson III said in a statement. "We sincerely regret that this situation occurred."
While both teams shared the blame in the brawl, on-court fighting has become a problem in China. According to the Associated Press, players in China have been fined tens of thousands of dollars by world and Asian federations for fighting with opponents.
The Hoyas are on a 10-day trip in China to promote sports diplomacy to help strengthen ties between the two countries. The U.S. State Department signed off the trip and Vice President Joe Biden was also in China at the time. He attended the Hoya’s win Wednesday night over Shanxi Zhongyu, but he was not in the building Thursday night.
Georgetown and the Rockets are scheduled to play again Sunday night in Shanghai, but the rematch seems unlikely to happen.
Contact Terrance Harris at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @Terranceharris