Miami Heat center Thomas Bryant, right, talks with New Orleans...

Miami Heat center Thomas Bryant, right, talks with New Orleans Pelicans guard Jose Alvarado, center, before a scuffle broke out between the two and both were ejected during the second half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Friday, Feb. 23, 2024. Credit: AP/Matthew Hinton

DENVER — The NBA will allow suspended Miami Heat center Thomas Bryant to briefly be in Denver's arena Thursday night so he can receive his 2023 championship ring from the Nuggets in a pregame ceremony.

Suspended players are typically not allowed to be present at the arena on game nights. Bryant will be wrapping up a three-game suspension for his involvement in an altercation that happened during a Heat game against New Orleans last week.

But given that the game is Miami's only visit to Denver this season, the NBA told the Heat that Bryant can be there and receive the ring he earned when he finished the 2022-23 season with the Nuggets — who beat Miami in the NBA Finals. Bryant signed with the Heat as a free agent last summer.

Bryant will have to leave the arena after the ceremony.

Denver handed out its championship rings on Oct. 24, just before playing its first game of the season. A player no longer with the title-winning team routinely get his ring in the first game against the former club. Otto Porter Jr. received his 2022 championship ring from Golden State when Toronto visited there in early January — a year and a half after Porter was part of the Warriors' most recent title team.

Denver's rings from last season have 16 carats of diamonds, rubies, and sapphires, representing the 16 playoff wins it took to win a championship.

Bryant appeared in 18 regular-season games and one playoff game with the Nuggets last season. He started that season with the Los Angeles Lakers, and was one of the players on the floor when LeBron James broke Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's NBA scoring record on Feb. 7, 2023.

That was Bryant's last game as a Laker. He was traded to Denver two days later in a four-team deal.

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