Milwaukee Bucks center Thon Maker was one of 13 players ejected for fighting after a massive brawl broke out between Gilas Pilipinas and Australia during the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers in the Philippines on Monday.
Australia was leading 79-48 with just over four minutes to play in the third period when a foul in the lane halted play. Australia's Daniel Kickert took exception to the foul on his teammate and launched an elbow at an unsuspecting member of the Philippines team, setting off the free-for-all. Both benches quickly emptied, including team officials, with the melee spilling off the court behind one of the baskets.
Maker, who plays for Australia, launched into a scrum of players who were wrestling near one of the baskets before turning, running at an opposing Philippines player and attempting to kick him. Maker then retreated toward midcourt.
Maker issued an apology on Twitter.
After assessing the replays of the fight, officials ejected 13 players from the game.
Maker, Kickert, Christopher Goulding and Nathan Sobey were ejected for Australia. Blatche, Terrence Romeo, Jayson Castro, Carl Bryan Cruz, Calvin Abueva, Roger Pogoy, Troy Rosario, Japeth Aguilar and Matthew Wright were the nine players disqualified from the Philippines team.
The game resumed with the Philippines team fielding only three players. Two of those players quickly fouled out, leaving one Philippines player on the court, which forced the officials to call the game with Australia winning 89-53.
FIBA has opened disciplinary hearings against Australia and the Philippines for the brawl, with the organization saying a decision will be announced in the coming days. The Bucks said they would have no comment about Maker.
Anthony Moore, the chief executive of Basketball Australia, issued an apology for his team's part in the ugly incident.
"Basketball Australia deeply regrets the incident in tonight's match between the Boomers and the Philippines in Manila. We are extremely disappointed with what happened and our role in it," Moore said.
"This is not the spirit in which sport should be played and certainly not in the spirit in which we aim to play basketball. We apologise to our fans and will await the penalties to be handed down."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.