What Does Ejected Mean In Basketball? Ultimate Guide

Like any sport, too much physical contact and unsportsmanlike conduct also happen every time in a basketball game, and one of the sanctions for their actions is a technical foul or simply “T” or tech.

However, that is not the most severe penalty a player or coach can have during a game, as they can get ejected.

So, what exactly is getting ejected mean in basketball, and how can you avoid it?

In basketball, an ejection is removing a player from the game due to a direct violation of a sports rule. Other members of the team, including the players on the bench and the coaching staff, can also be ejected from the court area for various reasons.

Now, let us dig in and learn more about getting ejected so that you can avoid it.

What does ejected mean in basketball?

In the NBA and other basketball leagues, a player, a coach, or anyone from the team’s bench can be ejected.

The usual causes of ejections include getting two technical fouls, doing an unsportsmanlike act, or committing a flagrant foul for players.

The ejected player or coach must immediately leave the court area to head back to their locker room or other areas outside the playing area.

A basketball official or referee can execute ejections at any time of the game, regardless of who possesses the ball, if he perceives violations of the sport’s rule.

According to the NBA Rulebook, a player can be thrown out from the game if he commits one of the following violations:

  • A punching foul;
  • A fighting foul;
  • Attempting to punch or elbow an opponent above the shoulder – regardless of whether it hits the player.
  • A bench player entering the court
  • Type 2 Flagrant Foul
  • Two Type 1 Flagrant Fouls
  • They are entering the ball game even if they are marked as inactive.

Getting ejected from an NBA game can also be fined a minimum of $2,000 to $50,000.

Players on the bench who are ejected for leaving the sideline will also face a one-game suspension.

More fines and suspensions can also follow if the ejected player or coach does not leave the playing area immediately after the ejection.

What is a technical foul in basketball?

A technical foul or simply “T” or tech in basketball is called to a player or bench personnel (including the coach and staff) for violating basketball rules. T

The more severe sanction for getting technical fouls is ejection from the court area with fines and suspension.

There are six (6) types of technical fouls according to the NBA rule book:

  1. Excessive Timeouts
  2. Delay-of-Game
  3. Number of Players
  4. Basket Ring, Backboard, or Support
  5. Conduct
  6. Fighting Fouls

Of these six types of technical fouls, only the fifth (Conduct) and sixth (Fighting Fouls) may directly result in ejections.

Technical fouls due to conduct might be given to players on the court or anyone seated on the bench if an official observed behaviors detrimental to the game.

Unsportsmanlike conducts that may result in a technical foul are the following:

  1. Disrespecting a game official.
  2. Touching or making physical contact with a game official.
  3. Excessive complaining about a call or no-call may include using profanity.
  4. Bench players and coaches enter the court.
  5. Intentionally throwing elbows and other unusual physical movements at an opponent.
  6. Taunting.

Technical fouls due to fighting fouls, on the other hand, are called if the players or the bench are assessed to be fighting – regardless of who has possession of the ball.

A maximum of $50,000 and/or suspension may be imposed.

What is a flagrant foul in basketball?

Flagrant foul in basketball

A flagrant foul is a type of personal foul called on a player who makes too much physicality, unwarranted motions, or violent actions that may cause an injury to a player.

A flagrant foul can be called for either the offensive or defensive player and can be charged regardless if the ball is dead or alive.

There are two levels of flagrant fouls in the NBA:

  • Type 1 Flagrant Foul is an unnecessary contact against an opposing player.
    • The first type of flagrant foul does not equate to automatic ejection unless he is called for another one.
  • Type 2 Flagrant Foul is an unnecessary and excessive contact committed against an opposing player.
    • A flagrant foul two will result in an automatic ejection for the offending player.

As a result of flagrant fouls, the fouled player will receive two free throws and ball possession.

If the fouled player is injured and cannot shoot free throws, his coach can substitute him with any player from the team.

Flagrant fouls one and two can be likened to yellow and red card calls in soccer and other sports.

Other Rules of ejection at different basketball levels

The rules for getting ejected may also differ depending on the level of competition in basketball.

While previously discussed was mainly from the NBA rulebook, here are some additional variations from other leagues regarding ejection.


In FIBA Rules, a player shall be disqualified (or ejected) for the remainder of the game when he is charged with either one of the following combinations of unsportsmanlike fouls or technical fouls:

  • Two Unsportsmanlike Fouls;
  • Two Technical Fouls;
  • One Technical and one unsportsmanlike foul.

Due to an unsportsmanlike foul, the fouled player will receive a combination of free throws and ball possessions.


In the NCAA Rules, the game officials can eject a player, coach, or team representative for misconduct or unsportsmanlike conduct from participating in an ongoing game.

The offending party must leave the field and dugout area immediately and cannot communicate with the team or umpires. The ejected players are dismissed to the locker room.

High school

Unlike the ejection rules for adults, the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) states that an ejected player must remain on the team bench.

This ensures that they are supervised by a coach or other adult team representative.

Who can get ejected?

Anyone on the basketball team can be ejected if assessed by an official to have violated the rules.

  • Players on the court can be ejected if they:
    • accumulate two technical fouls;
    • accumulate two flagrant fouls type 1;
    • commit a flagrant fouls type 2;
    • fighting fouls.
  • Players and the coaching team on the bench can be ejected if they:
    • enter the court without permission;
    • fighting fouls.

What happens when you get ejected in a basketball game?

basketball players in locker room

In most basketball leagues, an ejected player or anyone on the team’s bench should immediately head straight to the team locker room or dressing room, stay there for the remainder of the game, or leave the building.

Suppose they don’t follow the command from the game officials immediately.

In that case, they will risk heftier fines and even game suspensions.

However, ejected players must remain on the bench in high school basketball.

NBA players with the most ejections in history

The NBA is one of the strictest basketball leagues.

Its games can cause high tension and emotions between teams that can cause players and coaches to lose their composure, resulting in ejections.

Here are the ten (10) most ejected NBA players in history.

PlayerNumber of Ejections
1. Rasheed Wallace29
2. DeMarcus Cousins14
3. Kenyon Martin12
3. Reggie Miller12
3. Matt Barnes12
6. Metta World Peace (Ron Artest)11
6. Gary Payton11
6. Stephen Jackson11
9. Shaquille O’Neal10
9. Paul Pierce10

NBA Trivia on Ejections and Technical Fouls

  • The Malice at the Palace in 2004, also known as the Pacers-Pistons Brawl, is the most infamous brawl in NBA history involving players and fans. This led to the suspension of multiple players and even forced the NBA to change some rules regarding security and alcohol sales during games. Here are the suspensions sanctioned by the NBA for both teams:
Player (Team)Suspensions by NBASalary Lost
1. Ron Artest (Pacers)86 Games (73 Regular Season, 13 Playoffs)$4,997,500
2. Stephen Jackson (Pacers)30 Games$1,750,000
3. Jermaine O’Neal (Pacers)15 Games (Originally 25 Games)$4,115,000
4. Ben Wallace (Pistons)6 Games$400,000
5. Anthony Johnson (Pacers)5 Games$122,222
6. Reggie Miller (Pacers)1 Game$61,111
7. Chauncey Billups (Pistons)1 Game$60,611
8. Derrick Coleman (Pistons)1 Game$50,000
9. Elden Campbell (Pistons)1 Game$48,888
  • A player who accumulates 16 technical fouls in a single NBA season is automatically suspended for one game.
  • A player can be suspended for one game during the NBA playoffs if he accumulates seven technical fouls.
  • Rasheed Wallace holds the record for the most technical fouls in a single season with 41. This is like committing one technical foul every other game for an 82-game NBA season.


Getting ejected in a basketball game is not something to be proud of. Since basketball or any other sport, embodies good sportsmanship and healthy competition between players and teams, an ejection is an irregularity.

Though it is normal for emotions and tensions between teams, especially rivalries, to emerge, everyone in the team must practice proper composure and tolerance.

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3 thoughts on “What Does Ejected Mean In Basketball? Ultimate Guide”

  1. What is a wet willie? What is a dead ball? When is the referee considered prejudiced against the crowd? Does the negro Brian, aka Brandon Johnson assume the ID of spouse to all players girlfriends in pro ball, especially Michael Jordan?

  2. Why don’t kids of players have a special box to sit in? Sometimes you have to take yourself out of the game and go home.

    • That’s a valid point. But in the NBA, I believe players get free tickets each season that they can give to their family and friends. Though a special place for the family of the players would be great as you mentioned.


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