NBA fines Nets $100K for player participation policy violation

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The Brooklyn Nets was fined $100,000 by the NBA on Thursday for violating the league’s new Player Participation Policy, created to help ensure top players compete in big games.

The league said the Nets ran afoul of the new rule, introduced this season, in a December 27 home game against the Milwaukee Bucks.

After an investigation that included a review by an independent physician, the NBA determined four Nets rotation players who did not participate in the contest could have played under the policy’s medical standard.

Brooklyn benched four players for the contest — Spencer Dinwiddie, Cam Johnson, Dorian Finney-Smith and Nic Claxton — on the night after a 118-112 victory at Detroit.

“We’ve been very clear with teams what we are trying to accomplish,” NBA executive vice president and head of basketball operations Joe Dumars told  ESPN.

“If you’re going to sit four starters at one time, that’s going to violate the policy and it violates the spirit of what we’re trying to do here.”

The Nets lost to Milwaukee 144-122 in the game, the start of a current five-game losing streak that has dropped Brooklyn to ninth in the Eastern Conference at 15-20.

NBA team owners approved the policy last September to limit “load management” resting of top players during the 82-game campaign, with a focus on star players being rested by coaches in nationally televised contests.

The policy has exceptions for injuries and personal reasons and pre-approved issues.

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