The NBA announced Tuesday night that Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard won’t be suspended for Wednesday night’s do-or-die Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals; the League will not upgrade DH’s flagrant foul one from Game 4.
Rod Thorn has confirmed Dwight Howard's foul at 8:07 of 3rd quarter last night as a flagrant foul one. pic.twitter.com/lDJQCWhaQb
— NBA Official (@NBAOfficial) May 26, 2015
Golden State Warriors center Andrew Bogut had a funny reaction to Howard elbowing him in the grill.
Bogut didn't want to second-guess ruling of Howard's flagrant one. Did say he would "try not to head-butt elbows again."
— KEVIN DING (@KevinDing) May 26, 2015
Per the AP:
The decision comes with the Warriors leading the series 3-1 and after Atlanta’s Al Horford and Cleveland’s J.R. Smith recently received stricter penalties for contact above the shoulders. […] Stu Jackson, who ruled on such matters when he was previously the NBA executive vice president of basketball operations, wrote on Twitter that he was “baffled” by the league’s decision not to upgrade Howard’s flagrant. “Hard contact to face, reckless, released arm and flailed for free head shot and history,” Jackson tweeted.
Before the league announced the ruling, Rockets coach Kevin McHale argued that Howard was retaliating to the contact made by Bogut and the flagrant foul should not be upgraded. […] “I guess the one thing we’ll learn is we should be the first one to grab,” McHale quipped.
Warriors coach Steve Kerr declined to say whether he thought Howard’s flagrant should be upgraded, but he thought the contact was clearly above the shoulders. […] “He elbowed him in the head, so I don’t really know what the rule is,” Kerr said. “I’m not sure anyone really knows what the rule is. Seriously, it just seems like every case is a little different. There doesn’t seem to be a definitive answer, and there is a lot of gray area in all these plays, so I understand that.”