Post-game Reactions

Many people think Dwight Howard intentionally elbows people in the head.  Many people think Dwight Howard is an over-sized man-child who just does not have control of his body.  This debate inevitably leads to the questions plaguing people’s minds as they reflect on what transpired last night: is Dwight Howard a dirty player?

My post-game reaction post was quickly inundated with commenters voicing their opinions about various topics, most of which circled around whether or not Dwight Howard’s elbow to Davis’ face was intentional or not.  I say, it was both.

The fact is, Dwight Howard knows exactly what he’s doing when he’s throwing those arms around.  I have watched every moment of this series and the pattern is undeniable.

Stop me if you seen this one before…

Dwight Howard goes into the lane, gets pushed up on by a Celtics’ big, Dwight Howard proceeds to establish position by “resting” his elbow on a Celtics face.

Or how about this one…

The Celtics attack the lane hard, Dwight Howard helps to contest the shot by throwing the Celtic slasher to the ground- by his face.

What do these two scenarios have in common?  If you said they both involve Dwight Howard making gratuitous facial contact, you would only be half-right.  Not only does Howard invariably make contact with the opposition’s face, but he does also does so by conspicuously looking in the other direction.

In other words, Dwight Howard intentionally makes hard facial contact while making it look unintentional.

After the game, Dwight Howard was quoted as saying, “Never want to see anybody, especially a friend, go down like that.”

This is a little mind-blowing considering Dwight Howard is known for throwing elbows above the head. Does Dwight Howard think we do not see this?  Does he know his games are being filmed, let alone scrupulously combed-through by guys like me (and many more reputable writers)?

Come on man…

The following is a collection of just a few of the “Dwight Howard makes contact with some one’s face, but don’t worry, he didn’t mean to do it” moments from this series:

This is the one that led to today’s water-cooler chatter discussion.  You know, the one that knocked Glen Davis out of the game?  I had a commenter on my post-game link post say that he attended the game and heard no “boos” as Davis tried to get up but ultimately went down.  Listen to the audio from 38 seconds to 50 seconds.  I hear “boos” and I heard them more distinctly watching the live broadcast.

The Celtics have earned the “drama-queen” reputation by playing up injuries but the bottom line is that you never know whether an injury’s getting hammed up or it’s serious.  This one was serious and booing is classless.  An initial eye roll is fine, but booing an injured player is just classless.

Moving on…to another Dwight Howard face contact video:

Please Dwight Howard apologists, give it a rest because this one is flat-out indefensible.  The shot to Paul Pierce came after the whistle and after both of them had already landed on their feet.  If Dwight Howard doesn’t want to see anyone go down, he puts his hands up.  Plain and simple.

People will also say this throw-down is the same as Paul Pierce throwing J.J. Redick to the ground.  I say “Malarky!” An airborne player is a defenseless player.  The Pierce foul was correctly upgraded to a flagrant and this one…just a hard playoff foul.

This next one is the best example of what I will now call “The Howard No-Look”:

Howard clearly knows he’s got Pierce’s face in his mitt, and he throws him to the ground after the whistle.  Dwight Howard says he doesn’t want “to see anyone go down,” a statement that appears a bit misunderstood now.  I guess what Dwight really means is that he wants to see everyone go down.

The argument against this example of Howard being a dirty player is that he is just being aggressive and making hard playoff fouls.  The only problem is that Dwight Howard is not aggressive.  Dwight Howard is immature and constantly lacks focus.  Kevin Garnett is aggressive.  Kevin Garnett jaws at people, takes extra shots at people after the whistle, and gets in people’s faces trying to instigate issues.  Kevin Garnett intentionally elbowed Quentin Richardson right in the kisser and claimed it wasn’t intentional in one of the biggest post-game cop-outs I have heard in a while.  All of these things make people believe Kevin Garnett is a dirty player and they may have valid arguments.  But the one caveat is that if KG is dirty then Superman is dirty.  However, if I am picking between the lesser of two evils, I want the aggressive dirty player who plays the game for the glory, not the immature aggressive player that plays for the fame.

A few months ago, I got into it with Matt Moore of Hardwood Paroxysm (be sure to check out this article of his where he asserts that the Kendrick Perkins’ ejection had no effect on the  outcome of the game) in a Daily Dime chat as to whether or not the Celtics were a dirty team.  He says they are, I say he’s a known Celtics’ hater.

Maybe we are both right.  Maybe there a different levels of dirty.  Maybe there is an acceptable level of dirty.  All I know is if there is, Dwight ain’t it.

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  • DeVelaine

    I’ve noticed that, actually… Dwight seems to be the only big in the league that brings his arms down fast and hard after a shot or block attempt. And he always go up with both arms. And when he’s clearing out space after securing a rebound (a fair play that both Perk and KG do, as well as most other big men seem to do), he tends to have his elbows far higher than anyone else. Yes, if Perk hits someone with his while swinging, it’s sure to knock them flat as it’ll knock the wind out of them, but Perk is at the chest level, where Dwight’s at head level. What gives?

  • Stephen Dick

    I’ve been asking all week… WHY ISN’T HOWARD SUSPENDED??? KG threw an elbow that connected above the shoulders and was “AUTOMATICALLY” suspended one game. The league said that whether or not he intended to make contact was irrelevant. That if contact is made when you throw a punch, elbow, etc and it lands above the shoulders you get suspended. PERIOD. No review, no maybe he didn’t see the guy. You are gone. We have seen Howard throw HOW MANY that hit us in the head without so much as a regular foul outside the one that knocked KG to the ground and was later upgraded. 2 minutes earlier he had thrown a swipe that got KG a T when he retaliated. The league is babying Howard and it’s total BS. I’ve watched and argued for over 2 years now as Howard has thrown elbows at the Celtics and he never gets punished. Sure he got a suspension for the Dalamber foul 2 years ago but this is THIS year. To date he has thrown and missed at Rondo’s head 2 years ago (I was at the game court side saw it) threw and connected with Scal’s chest last year and now has taken to dropping the “People’s Elbow” on anyone unfortunate enough to be nearby. This isn’t counting the multiple after the whistle throw downs on Pierce. Last game looked like he wanted to keep Pierce’s arm as a trophy if not his head too. Did he get even a warning? No. He’s learned that after the whistle hammer away because there’s already a foul and they won’t call a second on same play. Sorry to all the people that think just because Howard likes to laugh and joke before games that he’s a “nice guy” but he’s a DIRTY PLAYER. I’ve been trying to convince anyone that would listen of this since the ’08 season. I was always told I was crazy and he was one of the “nicest guys in the league”… But one by one I’ve won people over with video of games like last night. Ask yourself if Perk had just knocked Odom out with the same elbow (or any elbow) if he would be playing next game? Doubt it. The C’s have a rep (well earned) as a tough physical team so the refs are allowing Orlando to go over the line to compensate. I just wish Doc would take a page out of Jackson’s book and take the $25,000 fine (he can afford it) and call the refs out publicly. Don’t just drop hints “a lot of elbows out there” Stand up at the mic and say “Dwight Howard has become a dirty player and for whatever reason the ref’s aren’t calling him for it.” He doesn’t have to go as far as I would that Stern is the new “Mr. McMahon” and the NBA is devolving into “Sports Entertainment” where the storyline is more important then the games played. But damn Doc… Stand up for you guys.

  • sacbobv

    Too bad the game isn’t on TNT. If it was we could all vote for the player cam to be on Cowards elbows.

    Hope the refs keep a close eye on this stuff before there is more than concussions to deal with.

  • Coolin

    Howard is definitely giving out cheap shots on the Celtics, I hope someone bust’s his nose one of these days, but that still won’t do enought justice.

    With that I am guaranteeing a Celtics victory tomorrow. The Big 3 are going big time with or without Rondo. Boston by 7-10.

  • Tyler

    Celtics fans should be ashamed of themselves for whining about elbows and fouls. You are the Celtics of Bird, McHale and Parish. This is good playoff basketball. The C’s reputation for diving like a soccer player doesn’t make the Magic suddenly exempt from being fair, but only the flagrant foul was flagrant (ie intentional).

  • KC

    The Celtics have to be smarter and not talk so openly about playing physical. By even admitting we are a physical team, the Refs and Stern hear “dirty team” and call it that way.

    Howard is a “nice guy”, hence he gets away with physical and dirty plays.

    I know where nice guys finish, last.

    PS: there are a few people out there making the point that Perkins wouldnt be suspended for a game for having 7 technicals if he didnt always complain about fouls against him, and encouraging regs to call technicals as well. There point is well made.

    The celtics should be a physical team. But dont champion it in the press. And dont argue (perkins and Wallace) every call.

  • He’s only doing what the referee, and the league, has continued to allow him & Shaq to get away with. If you watch Perk’s 2nd tech in G5, Howard connects with an elbow to the right side of Perk’s chin to create space.

    He needs to be held accountable for his elbows, whether on purpose or accident. This is a matter of player safety. Watching Glen stumble around like that was a scary moment and I’d hate to see any player’s career cut short because someone can’t control their body.

  • Berkcelt

    Call me crazy, but there’s a big difference even between throwing elbows and throwing elbows at someone’s head. I kind of thought the NBA agreed since it’s in their rulebook, but it doesn’t seem to matter here.

  • Mang

    I am absolutely disgusted with the events in Game 6 and have no qualms now despite my better judgment about accusing the NBA of rigging matches. Doc should just call the NBA out and absorb the fine he’s certain to get. And he should give Scalabrine some PT to see if he can get a good elbow on Dwight Howards stupid face and concuss the s*** outta him that low life. I’m sure Scals would jump at the challenge. ARGHHHH!!

  • pitiful

    Really? Celtic fans are whining about playoff basketball getting physical? Really? You guys are the absolute biggest two faced idiots. McHale closelining rambis is like your proudest moment and now a couple of inadvertant elbows by the christian guy have you guys crying?

    Wow, you guys are truly pitiful.

  • seriously

    I thought the celts would win game 6 no problem, but after 24 hours of ABSOLUTRELY nothing but whining from the celtics and their stupid little fans, it’s clear that you guys are in retreat. I guess philly made you more nervous than usual, and knowing there was going to be payback for the steroid driven 3-0 comeback in ’04 has you realizing it’s a lost cause.

  • get real c fans

    you guys are an embarrassment to a once proud franchise. Anyone here who remembers the cs of the 80s remembers a tough, no nonsense, no excuse team. Now all there are are excuses and whininess.

    Be real – your team got beat and your team is so damn whiny that refs are sick of you.

  • rondo-is-love

    Watching that clip of Baby just horrifies me and makes me seriously sick to my stomach.

    I’m sorry, but if the NBA doesn’t do something about Howard and his elbows, I don’t think I can watch NBA games anymore, especially not games involving Howard. I don’t know what they could possibly do, but the league office really needs to step in.

    I was born a couple years after the Celtics’ last championship prior to 2008 so I’m too young to know about the days before the hand-check rule, therefore I’m used to softer fouls. I’ve only seen guys get injured (i.e. Andrew Bogut, Shaun Livingston) from awkward landings and things like that, things where no one is at fault for. But after last night, I can see the reason why the league changed its rules.

    I don’t ever want to witness something like that again, happening live on TV and especially in person when I’m actually at the game. I have NEVER witnessed a life-threatening situation due to someone’s even slightly bad intentions and I would like to keep that slate clean for as long as I possibly can. I mean, what kind of person in their right mind would want to see that, regardless of how much you hate that player? Can you guys imagine if that had been someone tiny like Nate, Nash, Rondo or even Ray Allen in Baby’s place? What if a player ends up dropping dead during a game one day after someone else’s “intentionally unintentional” elbow? Call me sensitive, accuse me of overreacting, but people, especially Howard & whoever else does this kind of crap, need to realize that these things CAN happen.

    To this day, no team in the history of the NBA in 93 tries had ever come back from a 0-3 deficit… but like SVG–as well as other Magic players–said, that doesn’t mean it’s never going to happen. Just like last postseason, we could say no team in the history of the NBA had come back to win a series against the Celtics after being down 2-3 in 32 tries, but it happened last year, did it not? The same could go for those damn elbows and the outcomes of those hits.

  • pilgrimtraveller

    you get real, you twerpy gasbag. i remember the celtics of the 80s. i even remember some of the celtics of the 70s. if you weren’t prematurely senile, you would remember johnny most, the celtics announcer, who was constantly complaining about officiating, about McFilthy and McNasty, among a host of other villains. As long as there has been basketball, there have been complaints about officiating, because basketball is an impossible game to officiate. Speaking for myself, I don’t think there is a league-wide conspiracy favoring two teams to win it all, but I do think that officials favor superstars (of which the Celtics currently have none, of which the Magic have one—Dwight Howard) and home teams. The superstar playing at home Wednesday night was favored by a series of profoundly influential calls and non-calls. That’s an inarguable fact. And we have every right to complain about it. Meanwhile, speaking of em-bare-ass-ment, pick up those baggy trousers dude, you look like a plumber.

  • Chris

    You guys are all cry babies, Brendan Jackson youre supposed to be running a respected basketball blog

    instead you sound like a little girl, sure its fine to point out stuff, but you just sound stupid in this article

    o btw, dwight destroyed courtney lee last year in the playoffs with his elbow. Was that also intentional?

    Grow up, and i hope boston loses so youre sorry town is known as choke city.


  • joe

    SOLUTION: Send out a “goon” (Scal or Williams) and put Howard on his ass.

  • your fucing ridiculous. every fan complains about officiating. It happens. But the fact is that the officiating of game 5 unfairly changed the outcome of the game. That is undeniable. Im not saying the celtics dont foul harder than anyone in the league and i admitt i am proud that they paly hard. But the fact is they get called for it. Obvipusly they get called for it. And due to their hard play they get called for it sometimes when they dont deserve it. I understand that. But in basketball, when you hit someone to the ground, intentionally or unintentionally it is a foul. And it should be called. And for the people who want to call the Celtics whiners go ahead, but if marcin gortat got a KG elbow, got concussed, and was out of the game, and then it was propmtly followed by a no call, youd complain. And i would be able to admitt it chould have been called.

    in short, your a pussy

  • jonathan

    Agree with the others here (if not their word choices) that you’re trying to make something from nothing. All three videos above were correctly officiated and you have nothing to complain about. And yes the Celtics reputation as a group of whiners and divers doesn’t help in these situation, heck you’re own team didn’t seem too worried in either of the first two clips, possibly because they thought the same as everyone of us watching, “here we go again…” You should be running a professional blog, not a fanboy site.

  • Duhwight

    Have a look at more of my handiwork from game 4:


    Not only did I not get called for a foul on this play, but the best part is that KG got hit with a tech! How sweet is that?! God must have wanted it that way, no question.

  • MagicFan

    Are you all serious?

    Especially with the elbow to Davis I do not understand how anybody can argue that it was intentional. Howard was going up for a dunk and his arm gets hit by Nate Robinson, which alters his arm as he is coming down. It comes down on Davis’s face. Was it unfortunate, yes. It always is bad to see someone get a serious injury in a sport, but it was in no way intentional.

    Honestly, it seems like the Boston fans are just trying to find excuses and throw blame out instead of accepting the fact that they were outplayed in game 5 and the team is composed of a bunch of crybabies (Pierce, Wallace and Perkins, not referring to Davis here).

    Honestly I don’t think that Perkins deserved either tech. The first it seems like he just slipped and Gortat happened to be behind him. However, an argument could me made that it could be more “unintentionally intentional” than any of Howards. If he realized Gortat was there he could have purposefully slept in order to give a little elbow in order to force retaliation. That is not farfetched, but I think it is easier and better just to assume it was an accident, but honestly none of us would be able to know for sure. For the second it does seem like he was doing the right thing by walking away even if he was frustrated with a sketchy call. However, he does have a reputation for whining and complaining and if he didn’t have that then he would not have gotten the tech. And who knows he if was warned before about it. Regardless, I don’t think the techs should have been called, but I do in some sense see how the refs called them.

    So can we stop the whining and just watch basketball? Here is to a safe, good game 6. Good luck.


    @rondo is love….wow ur a joke go cry in ur room…its a contact sport not basket weaving….ur clearly not an athlete
    Hahahahah celtics are a joke….like everyone else said don’t forget the 80s….hey baby if u need a wheelchair I’m sure paul can help u out…..some of these celtic fans are down right pathetic…go LA…maybe well c u in the finals if ur not a part of history already….and the writer of this blog is so unprofessional and a huge homer….must be heinson

  • Ray Leighton

    Personally, I don’t believe that Dwight is deliberately a dirty player. That said, it doesn’t matter — the rules are quite specific; it doesn’t matter if it is intentional or not, elbow to the head is a foul and a technical. So let’s roll back here — while Game 5 was disturbing on a number of levels, the real problem is Game 4. Dwight got away with the elbow to KG’s head. The league admitted that the refs blew it — they changed the call to a flagrant one. If that call is made during the game, then it is two shots and possession. The shots go to Ray, who probably makes both of them, and Orlando has one less possession to score. Remember, the game went to overtime. But in the above scenario, it probably does not. The fifth game should never have happened because the Celtics would have won Game 4 if the refs had called this correctly. While bad calls can go both ways, this was a case where the officiating clearly determined the outcome of a game.

    Oh and LAFAN — just keep in mind that the NBA Championship is going on right now. It just happens to be called the Eastern Conference Finals this year. Just like in 2008. Embarassing the Lakers, assuming they even get past the Suns, would just be an exhibition for the Eastern champs, regardless of whether the Eastern champion was Boston, Orlando, or Cleveland.

  • j. bleedsgreen

    i like to believe that the only reason why howard isn’t suspended yet is because they can’t win with out him, which is completly unfair. how many people got hit hard by howard? pierce, kg, davis, and rondo? how many more people have to go down untill he gets suspended?

  • Sophomore

    I’m not sure what was in Howard’s mind. To me, the elbow to BBD doesn’t look intentional, while the others are, at least, examples of a guy who plays reckless or trained himself to bad habits. Like the elbow to KG’s head. If you clear space after a rebound by swinging your elbows, you can’t say you’re surprised when you clip somebody in the head one day. What did you *think* was going to happen?

  • Mang


    Basketball is a non-contact sport. It’s a game that epitomises finesse, skill and athleticism in a team context. Occasionally you push your weight around but you’re sorely mistaken if you think elbowing opposing players in the face, and yes, clotheslining a la McHale, is part of the game of basketball. Yes, it happens, but the point is IT IS ILLEGAL. So how many fouls was Howard called for? TWO, neither of which were for the elbows he threw that concussed two Celtics players. Intention is irrelevant as we have seen propounded by the NBA countless times before.

    I’m not saying this doesn’t happen. NBA basketball is played at the highest level. Injuries happen and players occasionally do hurt each other. But don’t blame us Celtics fans if we’re unhappy about this because if this sort of thing happened to your team, you would be blowing off steam exactly the same way we are. The point is they were FOULS and I agree with Sophomore that although Howard’s fouls don’t look intentional, they are clearly examples of a guy who plays recklessly and/or trained himself to bad habits.

    As in, if I start recklessly swerving while driving on the freeway, I’m gonna f*** some s*** up eventually. Now imagine I’m in a bulletproof Hummer and name it Dwight Howard. Wtf do you think is going to happen.

  • CG

    Dwight isn’t trying to hurt people, but he definitely isn’t worrying about where his elbows go and people are indeed getting hurt. Intentional or not, he is injuring people with the way he plays. Some dumbass above commented on how Dwight crushed Courtney Lee’s face with an elbow, as if that proves some point. All it proves is that Dwight hurts people.

    There gets to be a point, like with NFL QBs, where you need to recognize people are getting hurt and it shouldn’t matter whether there is intent to injure or not. DHoward is at that point. He needs to stop doing what is hurting people, and to be forced to do so by the NBA. If you keep intentionally doing things that can lead to someone being injured, even if causing injury isn’t your intent, you need to be held responsible for that.

    I can’t say whether Howard knows that he might continue to injure people with his flailing around, and it really doesn’t matter. He just needs to stop doing it, end of story, and it is totally unrelated to when the Cs or anybody else intentionally throw elbows, which will continue to happen in the playoffs.

  • steve

    Celt’s are floppers and divers??? How about Jameer taking a fall as Baby ran by him? Baby may be big but Jameer is too solid to have slight contact knock him off his feet. My bottom line on the refs is I am sick of hearing the argument that players reputations cause the calls or lack thereof. So, let’s call a T on Perkins for a mild reaction because he has a rep for getting a lot of them during the season. Makes no sense. There should be a standard applied to every player. There would be a dozen technicals whistled per game based on the standards that Perk is being held to.
    As far as the argument that the refs haven’t cost the Celtics any games in this series. That may be true to this point. But, by kicking out Perkins, improperly, Baby and Sheed were in his place when they get knocked out and hurt their back. That can have a much longer lasting impact on this series and the Celtics moving forward. Again, call the flagrant on Howard in game 4 when he elbows KG and who knows how that game goes.
    All we can ask as fans is may the best team win and have a level playing field.

  • boston = worst sports city ever

    unbelievable how much c fans are crying.
    philly philly philly
    if you lose tonight, and if the team is even remotely like its fans they aren’t even practicing right now because they’re all sitting around crying to each other, you will lose THE FIRST 3-0 LEAD EVER!!!!!!

  • Mang

    I just read the rest of LAFAN’s comment and I’m ashamed to have dignified… his comment… with a… response…. go Celtics… duh huh… He sounds like a drugf***ed retard in need of some precious brain cells.

    Actually, I feel bad now cos he might actually be retarded the way he just revealed his inane and rambling train of thought to us. Sorry LAFAN, I didn’t know. And feel free to make another inane comeback to prove that you are in fact a retard. If not, shame, I get the last laugh. Haha. Retard. Say hi to your mom for me.

  • Mo

    Dwight Howard does the same thing with his elbows that Dikembe Mutmbo did for his whole career. There are doctors that sent kids to college mending all of the noses that Deek broke and he very rarely got called for the foul. The post ain’t a pretty place to be.

  • boston = worst sports city ever

    mang – way to go for silly personal insults in order to hide the fact that your team sucks and they are about to make history by losing a 3-0 lead. This is a personal mark on your city, even worse than the 86 years with no world series (that should still be going if it wasn’t for steroid papi)

  • sg1108

    I bet if DH played for the Celtics the comments on this blog would be the total opposite. DH is always criticized for something, he’s too nice, he’s not dominate enough, blah, blah blah. Now that he’s being a dominate force against your darling Celtic angels he’s now a dirty player. You people are really something.

  • sauce

    If this is the case why have we not smashed him badly becasue I dont think he’d react to it as well as we have reacted to his?

  • Loots

    Although the outcome was much worse, I don’t have any issue with the no foul call on the hit to Big Baby. That one truly looked unintentional, whether intentional or not.

    But the Game 5 example where Howard floors PP is pure garbage. If you look closely at the video, which I remember noting when watching the game-time replay coverage, Howard glances at PP knowing exactly where his shoulder is coming down, yet does NOTHING to avoid bashing PP in the head. “If DH doesn’t want to see anyone go down,”… and he sees what the hell he’s doing… “he puts his hands up. Plain and simple.” AND… the foul on that play is on Gortat. I’m surprised this one wasn’t reviewed by the league, but then again, the foul did go on Gortat and not the league superstar.

    Big picture: when you relate this to the Perkins double-technical fiasco, what do the officials care most about: their reputations, when players whine about calls; or calling a game so that one player isn’t clobbering an opposing player out of the playoffs?

  • boston = worst sports city ever


    the celtics are broken. they get blown out at home tonight by 30 because all they do is complain to the refs about dwight howard.

    pierce will have 3 on the floor writhing in pain moments like he’s been shot but will be playing ball less than one minute later.

    kendrick will get his 7th tech tonight. And the only poeple who think he didn’t deserve it is the idiots on this blog and perkins and dumb*ss heinsohn.

  • Mang

    @boston =

    Actually I live in New Zealand so I will pretend like I don’t know what you’re talking about. Although I do know baseball is about as boring a sport as cricket. And has absolutely nothing in common with basketball.

    I support the Cs because they play beautiful basketball. I thought the Lakers were pretty sexy but I have grown to resent their entitled and generally unintelligent fans. I believe in Jesus, but also believe that he is currently named LeBron James. I also respected Orlando until I realised they already have enough help from the powers that be so why bother anymore.

    So yea, you should also feel free to retort as well or otherwise I shall have the last laugh here also. Haha. Hope your mom likes kiwis cos she’s gona get some tonight.

  • Ersatz

    Howard’s a bitch.

  • Air France

    Celtics fans should be embarrassed by this article. I wonder if Rondo will punch someone in the face tonight like he did Brad Miller. One thing we can count on is Paul Pierce to fall down like he got shot with a bazooka if someone touches him with a fingernail.

    Cry some more about the fans booing, what a joke. The crowd was quiet when they realized Davis was hurt and gave the guy an ovation whe he got up. When your team is known for flopping, people assume you are faking it since they do it so often, another embarrassment.

  • Herb

    I’m sort of 50/50 on this one. Is Dwight Howard a dirty player? I honestly don’t think so. I do, however, find it a little strange that Howard, who is by all accounts one of the best athletes in the league (and by far the strongest), has such a difficult time controlling his body when coming down for rebounds/after blocks. I’m not half the athlete Howard is (hell, I’m not half the athlete Eddy Curry is), but I’m coordinated enough to have control of my limbs and not knock people out with flying elbows when I play ball. If I can do it, surely a professional athlete has the means to do it as well. That being said, I don’t think Dwight Howard is actively trying to hurt people- if I had to guess, he probably just thinks that since the C’s are hitting him like crazy, he’ll just be a little more reckless with his elbows until they get the hint/give him his space.

    The bigger issue is that, while the Celtics may be playing Howard more physically than most teams, the fact remains that the job of the referees is to ensure that things don’t get too physical while still allowing the players to play the game. In this series, the referees have done a pretty poor job of that for both sides- they’ve let Howard get mauled down low (I love to see it because I don’t like the guy, but he does take a lot of punishment), but they’re also letting him take matters into his own hands by retaliating with devastating elbows. And then when things are starting to get TOO physical, the refs have completely panicked and developed quick whistles; hell, even Gortat said he didn’t think Perkins should’ve been called for the first T, and we all know the second one was completely undeserved. It’s disrupting the games, and it makes it impossible for either team to play freely, because they never know what kind of calls the refs are going to make/not make.

    So ultimately, where does the blame lie? With the Celtics, for publicly boasting about being a physical team (thus drawing attention to their rough, aggressive style of play)? With the referees, whose inconsistent calls have thrown everyone off to the point where Perkins might get a technical for swearing at himself after a missed shot? Or is it with Howard, whose convenient “lack of control” has knocked out one, maybe 2 of our best players and whose after-the-whistle bonus fouls are going to get someone seriously hurt? I honestly don’t know- I think the blame rests equally on all three parties, but that’s just my opinion.

    Let’s hope Big Baby gets back tonight (and, for that matter, Sheed), because we’re going to need them. Get after it, Celtics.

  • FINALLY. I’ve been saying this for three years and felt like nobody agreed. Now it turns out a lot of us have noticed the same thing. I don’t think he is a villain – but I think he has very active elbows in areas that could be dangerous to other players and he knows he is one of the strongest players in the NBA – and does nothing to slow them down.

    I know apologists say he’s so strong, he can’t help but make take peopel out accidentally but come on. I don’t see Shaq or Yao or Lebron or Karl Malone throwing elbows at peoples heads.

    I don’t even have a problem with a player getting away with fouls because he knows how – Rip Hamilton is a master of it. But Howard makes hits on people after play is over, after the whistle blows. That’s not a crafty veteran getting one over on the refs – that’s just dirty.

  • Jay P

    Stay on your own blogs if you’re just going to come here and bash the C’s with stupid idiotic comments.

    Here’s the bottom line, like Ray Leighton (who can generally be counted on as a sane voice of wisdom) put it. It’s the rules. Intentional or not, the rule book says and elbow to the face is a foul and a T. Period, end of story.

    Elbow to the face, foul, technical. It’s in the book, it needs to be enforced. If not, why do we have a rule book at all? Let’s throw it away and let them go street style ball, right?

    If it should be changed, fine, change it. But that’s the rule, and it’s no coincidence that Howard just happens to make face contact about 4 times a game with his elbow. Maybe he’s not intentionally dirty, but at the very least, he is a dangerously out of control player, and something needs to be done about it.

  • FYATroll

    Dwight Howard elbows people intentionally. So? Move on and stop the whine fest dude. The Celtics elbow people intentionally, where is your wall of text criticism of that? Did you take Ray Allen to task last year when he purposefully elbowed Varejao in the nuts? Did you write a 2,000 word essay on the matter with videos and all? Doubt it.

    Take of Lowe and try to come at this with a little bit of objectivity. This stuff is just impossible to stomach.

  • Jay P


    All teams throw elbows, that’s not the issue. This is the playoffs, you battle underneath and catch a guy with a shot in the chest and the refs don’t see it? Sweet, good play, and you’re damn right the Celtics (and every other team out there) do that, you’re going to take every chance you can to make a guy think twice about fighting you underneath next time.

    But not to the head. The entire issues comes down to Howard’s use of elbows above the neck. It’s dangerous, and intentional or not just doesn’t matter. There’s a reason the rule book states no contact can be made above the neck, WITHOUT EXCEPTION. Intentional, unintentional, it doesn’t matter, it’s the rule because the league wants plays conscious of where their elbows are, and they should be.

    Davis’s concussion is just the first time it’s reached this level, you better believe Howard will knock someone else out someday with the way he plays, and it might be more serious next time.

  • pilgrimtraveller

    @fyatroll, go back to your moldy cave and gnaw on bones, pal. you aren’t fit for civilized company, and you’re incapable of coherent argument. no one here would have argued against ray allen being given a technical or being thrown out of the game for what he did to varejao. no one here would argue with rondo being given a technical for what he did to brad miller. (although i hasten to add that both varejao and miller are cheap-shot artists of the first magnitude who got what they deserved when players, who normally aren’t nasty, were pushed past their limits). frankly, i wouldn’t have complained about perkins getting t-ed up in game 5 against the magic, if howard’s action had been similarly punished. howard got away with a mugging against pierce. say what you want about pierce as a drama queen (he isn’t, by the way, but i won’t argue the point), even drama queens can’t be thrown to the floor as howard did to pierce. the officials took over the game, and they did so unfairly. we have every right to complain, as you will after tonight’s game when the officials watch howard like a hawk and he’s given his fourth foul early in the third quarter, and he has to sit. look, one thing celts fans know, lakers fans show up on celtics boards every time the celts lose and they rag on us for complaining about officiating, as if they’re above such complaining. yeah, sure, which is why lakers fans were complaining about officiating last night even after they won the game. every basketball fan complains about officiating, because it is routinely bad and sometimes it is extraordinarily bad, as it was for the celtics two nights ago. i’ll bitch and moan as much as i want to until i reach heaven where the games will be officiated fairly. until then, don’t come here and whine about others who complain about officiating until you can muster logic and argument on your side. and wipe that dripping marrow off your chin, you look like a troll.

  • Cptn Bubbles

    What is really funny is all the Celtic haters actually taking their valuable time to come here to read all the comments & then take even more of their priceless time to write about how they can’t stand to spend time here reading our stupid, ridiculous comments………..Duh…………..

    I have NEVER gone to another team’s blog site looking to hate all over their team. Think of the self-inflicted misery these haters love….. It’s not enough to hate on their home team’s site. No, they are actually seeking out more places where they can spread their hate. That’s pathological & psychotic. Strange, They enjoy complaining about other people who complain

  • Someone who can actually play BBall and knows what they are talking about

    I find it incredible how many points of view you can run into an claims of biaism there are when articles of opinion are put on these websites.

    First of all, this is called Celtics Hub right?

    So why are bitchy Magic fans on here?

    To try to justify what a PUSSY Howard is?

    Coming into this series I honestly thought that the Magic would be a very tough out. 6 hard games to finish the series was my prediction. However, I have been continually amazed at how Howard has become Shaq incarnate from his Laker days.

    Someone touches Howard and it’s a foul.

    But when Dwight OBLITERATES someone’s HEAD (not just a Celtic), it’s just because he is “too big” or “dominant” and that’s why people get hurt around him.

    Or the, everyone fouls Dwight in the post on every play so why can’t he foul???!!!

    I have a first hand perspective on EXACTLY what Howard goes through every game!

    99 times out of 100 when I step on a court I am the BIGGEST guy on the court.

    I play hard nosed defense in the post because that is how you win!

    And every time I get the ball in the post I get hacked. As bad or worse than Howard because most of the time it’s with no refs in the game, and I don’t call PUSSY fouls for myself. But as far as using the “I don’t know my own strength” Bullshit to wack people with your elbow…that’s the sign of a little cry baby Bitch! Which is exactly what Dwight Howard is playing like.

    Perkins DOMINATED Howard Defensively in the post the first game, Game 2 got in foul trouble and Dwight had a big game, Game 3 Perk DOMINATED him yet again, and Game 4 Foul trouble for Perk yet again. Then of course Game 5 with that debacle.

    Perkins is not smooth, not pretty in the post, and by no means graceful with his picks that he sets, but Dwight gets the benefit of the doubt every single time he’s on the court but I’m sorry if KG gets EJECTED and SUSPENDED, for an elbow (and it didn’t matter if it’s intentional or not according to the league) then Dwight should’ve been ejected for both shots to Pierce in the series, both shots to KG’s head since he did it twice in the same game, and the shot on Davis even though I don’t think it was intentional.

    Players are to accountable for any part of their body when on the court. At least that’s the BS the league spewed when they suspended KG in the Heat series.

    So David the Dickwad Stern better start upholding his OWN bullshit!!!

    Not to mention that he only has 2 flagrants in the playoffs. Should have 20 by now and be serving a 1 YEAR suspension. Stern needs to take a few notes from Goodell on how to keep his BITCHES in line!

    STV= Whiny Bitch Howard= Whiny Bitch Stern=Whiny Bitch Magic fans who defend Howards blatant disregard for other people’s safety on the court and gets away with it=Whiny ASS Bitches!

    Won’t matter after tonight. C’s in 6!

  • RBD

    So nice to see so many new names spreading the love.

  • FYATroll

    @pilrgim, you missed the entire point of my post, but that doesn’t surprise me.

    Jackson, more than than the other writers, take it upon himself to point out the unjustices he sees throughout the course of the game.

    The problem is he doesn’t seem to really care when it’s his Celtics knocking people out. Get it now? Was that coherent enough for you? Doubt it.

  • pilgrimtraveller

    troll, perhaps you could remind us of the last time—or any time—when a celtics player actually knocked another player out. the rondo foul on miller wasn’t a knockout; it was a rough, playoff foul, rightly rated a flagrant. the allen elbowing of varejao, was a nasty incident, atypical of the ray allen. meanwhile, howard routinely hurts people, intentionally or not. it seems to me that your attempt at parallelism fails.

  • Man, I am dissapointed with this site sometimes. I know I come on here as an ‘enemy’ but I guess it depends on the day and who is posting because some days you get these level-headed people making compelling arguments. . .and then there are days like this when you get people saying that Howard is a dirty player and a ‘bitch’ and should be suspended and all this? What gives?

    My favorite is when people say ‘it’s unfair how Howard beats people up with his elbow so let’s have a bench player go out there and cripple him!’ Come on guys. . .I know some of you are better than this. Seeing Big Baby wobbling around should have made you realize that, in the end, this is just a game.

  • @Will. If Howard wants to play rough, We will play rough.

  • Someone who can actually play BBall and knows what they are talking about

    I agree with Will.

    This is just a game.

    However, games have rules.

    Rules which EVERYONE is subject to.

    When you are playing Monopoly, or Scrabel, or any other game, there are specific rules that everyone must abide by in order to play. Otherwise you’re branded a cheater.

    So why is it that when it comes to Sports like Basketball the “rules” are left open to “interpretation” or “biaism” or the “officials discretion”? Rules are rules. It has nothing to do with intent!

    If you go out and have a few drinks and get in your car and drive do you “intend” to hit someone and kill them?

    But you go to jail anyways regardless if you hit and kill someone.

    So why is it that when players all around the league get personal, technical, and flagrant fouls called against them, for the exact same things that Howard does EVERY SINGLE GAME and DOESN’T get called for it?

    It’s not right. It’s not fair, and it’s not what playing the game is about.

    When you watch a HUGE game and look on as the final seconds tick away from amazing performances by both sides, and the first thing that everyone talks about is how HORRIBLE and ONES SIDED or INCONSISTENT the officiating is…that’s a disgrace.

    I don’t hate Howard. But the fact that the league allows this type of favoritism is a disgrace to the sport which I as a fan LOVE and watch every season.

    I have a right to sit down and watch a good solid game and not feel like I’m watching the most up to date version of the WWF, which is what this series has become thanks to the officiating of Dwight Howard and the onsided calls that have been going on the last 2 games.

  • shane9459

    I agree he has used his elbows, pushes off, and his so called non-intentional follow-thru fouls that in replay appear to always end the same; which is his hand hitting the face of his opponent. It seems no one takes notice b/c he walks away smiling.

  • torpid bunny

    They said it best here. D Howard is a punk, plain and simple.

    Now, hard fouls are part of the game. But there’s a difference between sending a message with a hard foul, something the celtics bigs know how to do, and being a cheap shot artist. Dwight is the latter.

  • Jay P


    I agree with you about all that nonsense about “revenge on Howard” or any of that crap. It’s all bullshit, and Celtics fans (and Boston Globe writers) need to keep a lid on that kinda talk.

    The issue comes down to 1) what’s in the rules, and 2) Howard’s dangerous methods of playing basketball (intentional, unintentional, I don’t care, they’re dangerous.)

    The League needs to send a message to him that says elbowing people in the heads WILL NOT be acceptable, END OF STORY. They fail to do this every time he gets away with these little shots.

    The Davis shot was an accident, no doubt. I do not believe Howard means to cause harm to anyone. But the bottom line is he plays in a matter where he throws his elbows around a lot, it’s been well documented and you really can’t argue the fact. It’s a dangerous way to play basketball.

    Hard fouls, elbows to the chest or back, if you get away with, are one thing. This is the playoffs, I expect it. A shot to the head is unacceptable, period.

  • Someone who can actually play BBall and knows what they are talking about

    The conflict boils down to this.

    Yes to all the Magic fans who want to complain about what the Celtics do.

    Yes, the Celtics play tough and they commit hard fouls, and sometimes fly off the handle and do something unsportsman like such as KG with the elbow on Q in the Heat series. But what happens when they do those things? They get called for it!!!

    Perk=Ejection (which was for 2 crap techs and the league rescinded one of them but he was already gone for half a game? What good does it do to take it back and say “we were wrong” now? Yeah he’ll play this game but he already missed half of one! Should a simple “Well yeah we were totally wrong and completely blew it in that game and threw out the best 1 on 1 post defender in the league, but we’re going to make up for it by giving you…oh wait…we’re not going to give you anything!”)

    The league should own up to it’s mistakes when refs jack up a call.

    For example, if officials blow a call they should be suspended for the next game or two without pay.

    If a player commits a flagrant and it is called a flagrant 1 in game and upgraded to a flagrant 2 after the game, they should serve a 2 game suspension because they would’ve been thrown from the game and got a suspension, if it had been called correctly, and the officials should serve suspensions without pay.

    The officials should have to have the rule book memorized, take a written exam every year (including questions on the most obscure rules) and should have to watch simulated game tape as a part of the examination, and should be asked what they would call on such a play. If the officials do not answer with a 99% consistency among them on calls, then the league needs to have more seminars and testing and assigned material in order to have consistency accross the board from their officials.

    They should also be put through psych testing and player to official evaluation to make sure that certain refs are not involved with certain teams ie: Joey Crawford and Tim Duncan.

    The league MUST keep their own house in line FIRST! Make them accountable when they DO jack it up!

    But so far………………we’re still waiting Stern!

  • Ray Leighton

    I think what bothers me the most about all of this is that the officiating has just been so generally bad this series that when the Celtics win tonight, I am going to be left wondering if they won because they played better or won because the league sent a directive to the refs to keep a closer eye on Dwight. It’s going to happen — the last couple of games have gotten too much attention in the neutral press, and you know that the last thing the NBA wants at this point is another replay over and over again of everyone watching a player get injured by a shot to the head. Glenn Davis’ hurting on the court probably got as much airtime as a Lebron highlight reel, and that’s not an image the NBA wants. Dwight does need to watch his elbows, and the league does need to keep better track of this sort of thing. But you know that tonight, Dwight is going to get called for some pretty iffy fouls. At some level, some of us will think that is fair and that it will be appropriate “payback”. But if the refs are going to decide multiple games in the series, then what’s the point of watching? I really was looking forward to this series because I think that the Celtics and Magic are the two best teams in basketball. But like Jason, I am getting to the point where I simply don’t enjoy watching the game as much anymore.

  • Jay P

    Preach Brotha.

  • Coolin

    If you don’t like watching the game than don’t watch. The team that shoots the ball well, wins. It’s not up to the refs as far as shooting goes. The better team will win tonight and that will be the Celtics, why because they are better, not because of the refs. Quit crying all of you and also Dwight is giving out cheap shots.

  • Mang

    Here’s to a good game guys. At the end of the day, players just need to play. Hoping the Celtics’ focus is on the game cos it seems like we pretty much shot the s*** outta everything else. Looking forward to a HUGE EFFORT to end this series once and for all. I will be cheering from my couch in New Zealand. GO CELTICS.

  • @Jay P

    Thanks. You do make some great points. . .Howard has likely figured this method of sticking the elbows high will deter people from grabbing rebounds from him (like Rodman used to do the splits to kick people near him so he could box out ‘effectively’).

    I don’t that 100% of the time he thinks ‘I’m going to whirl around and pound the crap out of Garnett’s head’. Has he done it before. . .no doubt. . .but so has almost everyone else. But I don’t think it’s a conspiracy theory but I do agree head shots, when intentional, should be taken care of.

    But I think the decision should be made by a third party (not Celtics fans or Magic fans) because as some people have shown on this board, when emotions get the best of us (and I am referring to Magic fans like me too) we don’t think too clearly. Some Boston fans are ‘Howard is dirty’ when emotions are high. In retrospect, no matter how this series ends up, it probably won’t look as bad. Same with Magic fans. . .I hear a lot of my compatriots saying the Celtics are dirty and blah blah blah.

    After the Magic got knocked out by the Pistons in 2008, I was behind the Celtics the whole way. I hated them for one round last year and one round last year and my vision was blurred. It’s funny how the goggles clear up a bit when we aren’t playing each other (and I really like the Celtics).

  • Someone who can actually play BBall and knows what they are talking about

    I just wish we could have a clean game. That’s all that most of us want I think.

    Just call the game in a fair consistent way and let the play on the court decide who wins. Not the whistles, not injuries, just whoever is playing the best.

  • yarlmak

    Obviously those elbow shots are intentional. I don’t think that means that Howard is a dirty player. The dirty, nasty thing is how the national broadcast team falls all over themselves to proclaim “that wasn’t intentional.” After Glen Davis got KO’d, one announcer theorized that he was suffering from…..DEHYDRATION. Maybe he thought that no replays would be broadcast. The dirtier thing is how the refs don’t call fouls on enough of these ridiculous flying elbows. Dwight is not dirty- hes just doing his job. I guess the refs are too.

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