If the Suns lose a close game tonight and subsequently the series, it will be one of the greatest stains on David Stern's legacy as a commissioner. That a toss-up series that may well decide the NBA Champioinship, may be decided by a few inconsequential steps onto a court is beyond ridiculous. He created a stupid rule in the first place and is compounding his error by not using discretion in enforcing it.
I believe that Stern is so terrified of the "thug" image his league has developed that he lost his mind. He is sabotaging one of the most compelling series his league has had in years, in an effort to preserve the NBA's reputation. However, by suspending star players, he has called further attention to an otherwise completely forgettable minor skirmish. Double whammy: Worse on court product and more negative press.
Coming to the defense of a person you care about is the right thing to do, in just about any other context that I can imagine. I don't mean you should start swinging your arms like a psychopath, but making your presense felt in such a situation is more than appropriate. The fact that they were able to be restrained by a simple nudge from a middle-aged assistant coach shows that their intentions were not to start a brawl.
So what are the lessons learned?
1) If you are losing a game, have a scrub flagrantly foul your opponent in front of their bench and hope to provoke one of their stars to leave the bench.
2) Don't run to the defense of your teammates.
3) If you do impulsively leave the bench, you might as well not restrain yourself, because you are going to get suspended anyway. Jump right into the fray.
Does any of this make sense?