This could have been a lot worse for Kings rookie forward Thomas Robinson.
And for Jonas Jerebko, for that matter.
What if Robinson's maliciously thrown elbow during Wednesday's game against the Detroit Pistons had struck and crushed Jerebko's windpipe instead of striking the meaty side of his throat?
What if Jerebko couldn't have gotten up off the Sleep Train Arena floor without emergency medical attention?
Robinson could have faced a much longer suspension and possible legal action taken by the Jerebko and the Pistons.
If Robinson or Joe Citizen had struck Jerebko in the same manner on a midtown street corner, it would be called assault and battery.
Robinson should be thrilled with a two-game suspension, a slap on the wrist that will cost him about $82,000 in salary.
And when he returns Tuesday against Portland, a league-wide scouting report will be out on the 21-year-old: Get in the kid's head, poke at him, needle him, frustrate him; make him angry and turn him into the Discreditable Hulk.
Robinson can choose how he reacts to the added attention from opponents and the watchful eye of game officials. Will he lose his cool and lash out again, or will he act like a professional?
The rookie from Kansas has played in only five NBA games, and his first national highlight reel as a pro isn't one to be proud of.
But it could have been a lot worse.
What to do
High school football, Grant at Burbank, 1 p.m.: The Pacers' down year could be forgotten with a victory in this rematch.
What's your take on Thomas Robinson's punishment?
Just about right
Vote above or leave your comments in the comment field; or, go to www.sacbee.com/sports
At the midpoint in the NFL season, who is the Rookie of the Year?
Robert Griffin III: 12%
Andrew Luck: 64%
Doug Martin: 21%
Total votes: 211
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