Sports

Duke's Allen shoves FSU assistant after chasing loose ball

Duke's Allen shoves FSU assistant after chasing

Duke guard Grayson Allen appeard to shove a Florida State assistant coach as he was falling into the seats chasing a loose ball during the Blue Devils' 88-72 loss on Tuesday night.

No. 7 Duke was trailing ninth-ranked Florida State 75-61 with 6:00 to play in the second half when Allen raced toward the sideline to try to grab a loose rebound near the Seminoles bench.

As Allen was in mid-air and about to fall into the Florida State bench, he shoved Florida State assistant Dennis Gates with two hands.

The game was Allen's third and first on the road since serving a one-game suspension for intentionally tripping Elon's Steven Santa Ana on Dec. 21. Allen tripped three players over the past two seasons.

In another incident, the Atlantic Coast Conference reviewed video footage to determine whether Allen attempted to trip a player last Saturday during the Blue Devils' game against Boston College but said there was no conclusive proof.

In Tuesday's incident, it was not clear whether Allen was intentionally shoving Gates in frustration or attempting to push the assistant coach out of the way as he fell.

Gates tweeted a statement Wednesday morning with a hashtag reading "give Grayson a break," writing he did not "in any way feel attacked nor disrespected as the media and others are portraying Grayson Allen's character and hustle."

"I clearly need to do a better job of moving out of the way like my coworkers," Gates wrote on his Twitter account. "I clearly did not make the correct decision. I misread Grayson Allen's speed the same way you all are misreading the clip."

Gates, a sixth-year assistant coach on Leonard Hamilton's staff, also told ESPN that the collision was "not a dirty play."

"Grayson Allen did not make a dirty play," Gates said Wednesday morning. "That was not a dirty play. He plays hard, he dove after a loose ball. I should have been sitting down, but I wasn't. My intent was to absorb the contact. His hip hit my hip and that's what people aren't looking it. That's a basketball play. Not a dirty play. We teach kids to run down loose balls and make hustle plays. That's what he did. He was just trying to get back in the play.

"No words were exchanged on the play. It was just a basketball play."

Duke interim head coach Jeff Capel, who is replacing Mike Krzyzewski while he recovers from back surgery, was not asked about the incident after the game but said he didn't believe Allen was affected by the Florida State crowd.

"I don't think what other people say, chant or do wears on him that much," Capel said. "The kid has been through a lot -- he brought a lot of it on himself, but some of the things that have happened are just crazy. I am not talking about the chanting; that stuff happens on the road with a really good crowd, and they had a really great crowd tonight. But I don't think that wore on him. I think Florida State's defense and their relentless pressure did."


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