Dwight Howard Won’t Be Suspended for Flagrant Foul On Pierce

Last year, Orlando Magic coach Stan Van Gundy spent some time crying about certain players receiving preferential treatment regarding suspensions, depending on the situation.  He was specifically referring to the league’s decision to not suspend Rajon Rondo following a flagrant foul he committed on Chicago’s Brad Miller.  I’m sure Van Gundy has no problem with the officials giving stars preferential treatment in this year’s playoffs, because if they didn’t he’d be without his best player for Game 3 against the Celtics in Boston.  The NBA reviewed Dwight Howard’s foul on Paul Pierce in last night’s game — which was ruled a Flagrant 1 — and announced that the play will stand as called and will not be upgraded to a Flagrant 2.  That means, of course, that Howard will not be suspended.  In case you missed it, here’s the video of Dwight Howard’s flagrant foul on Paul Pierce during Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

I’m never one to complain about suspensions not being handed out — especially in the playoffs when it could potentially affect the outcome of a series.  However, there’s no doubt in my mind that if this foul is committed by let’s say, Kendrick Perkins, its a Flagrant 2.  Granted, Perkins is a loud mouth who loses his cool far more often than Howard, but this is absolutely star treatment at its finest.  Howard grabbed Pierce by the face and threw him to the ground.  If that isn’t considered trying to hurt someone, then I really don’t know how you can determine what is and what isn’t.  Maybe Van Gundy’s whining last year paid off.

NBA: Howard won’t be suspended [ESPN]
Video Credit: YouTube user DontHateTheGhost

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  • http://larrybrownsports.com Larry Brown

    I think that was a good, clean, hard foul, if there’s such a thing as a clean hard foul. No doubt Howard came down hard on Pierce, but Pierce is also a notorious actor on the court (need I mention the wheel chair?). His actions after the hard hack make it worse than it probably was. A suspension would have been excessive to me.

  • Kevin/Indianapolis

    Tough call from me on this one. I have seen players get suspended for far less. I think the NBA took pity on the Magic.

  • te

    @Larry Brown-

    I’m not really sure how you can be an actor in this case. How do you fake being grabbed by the face and slammed to the ground? That’s a flagrant 1 no question, and probably a flagrant 2 if its anyone else, period. You can’t flop being slammed by your face.