Police announced Tuesday that they were opening a probe into a fight between teammates on the Hapoal Holon basketball team that led to its star player’s dismissal from the squad.
“Following Hapoal Holon’s announcement to the media about the incident that happened yesterday in the locker room of Hapoal Holon’s basketball team, the Israel Police opened a probe into the circumstances of the incident,” police said in a statement.
Hapoel Holon said it released Glen Rice Jr. after the team’s Monday night loss because of a “severe disciplinary infraction.” It said Rice punched teammate Guy Pnini in the face in the locker room. Pnini was hospitalized with a suspected facial fracture.
The two players had openly argued on the court before the game, with Rice quoted as telling Pnini “I’ll wait for you in the locker room.”
“Glen jumped on him like an animal and struck him in the face. Guy didn’t think it would actually continue in the locker room,” an unnamed Hapoal Holon player told the Walla news site.
“I never saw something like this in my life, [Rice] had murder in his eyes,” he added.
המשטרה פתחה בבדיקת התקרית אמש בין גלן רייס ג׳וניור וגיא פניני, בתום משחק הכדורסל בין הפועל חולון להפועל גלבוע/גליל בו נזקק פניני לטיפול רפואי אחרי שנחבט בפניו pic.twitter.com/FmdnnAmDjn
— Ofir Yonatan (@ofir__yonatan) April 10, 2018
The 27-year-old Rice is the Israeli league’s top scorer, averaging more than 24 points a game, and has led Holon to the top of the standings.
He also won a state cup thanks to a last-second winning shot against powerhouse Maccabi Tel Aviv. Rice, who briefly played in the NBA, was previously arrested in the United States on battery and robbery charges. His father is three-time NBA all-star Glen Rice.