Hawks’ Dejounte Murray takes ‘full responsibility’ for Game 4 confrontation



BOSTON — Dejounte Murray takes “full responsibility” for his actions that led to a one-game suspension following Game 4 of the Hawks-Celtics series Sunday at State Farm Arena.

While addressing the media before Game 5 on Tuesday (Murray won’t be allowed on the sidelines during the game), Murray accepted his role in the postgame confrontation with official Gediminas Petraitis that resulted in the suspension for making inappropriate contact with and verbally abusing a game official.

But the Hawks guard went into great detail in describing the event as somewhat of a culmination of an emotional response after a key loss and a past – and present – history with the official.

“It was a lot that led up to it,” Murray told reporters at the Hawks’ shootaround Tuesday morning. “Like, a lot, you know, a lot of ignoring, a lot of, you know, brushing me off, brushing my teammates off, you know, just asking questions of how we can be better.”

On Sunday, a video that circulated on social media showed that the 26-year-old guard bumped Petraitis while it appeared he was complaining. Murray headed directly toward Petraitis as time expired and shouted in the official’s face as he bumped into him. After taking several steps after bumping Petraitis, Murray turned and pointed. Teammate Aaron Holiday immediately intervened and helped escort Murray off the floor with other team personnel.

Murray and the team learned of the suspension Monday after the team had arrived in Boston.

“My reaction was, (it’s) out of my control,” he said. “It is what it is. You know, those types of things where it’s out of your control, and you just wait to see the results, really. That’s pretty much how I took it.”

Murray, who has averaged 25.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 5.8 assists and 2.3 steals in the playoffs, took accountability for what happened on Sunday. But in explaining what led to the incident, he alluded to having a less-than-positive history with Petraitis dating to when he played for the Spurs.

“And even just with that, you know the individual goes back to San Antonio, where I don’t know why that person, you know, treated me the way he treated me over the years,” he said. “And when I mean ‘treat me,’ you know, I’m just a guy that likes to have conversations, especially with the referees. And you ask 98% of the refs, why they greet me, you know, before games, they’ll tell you. Because I’m one of the most respectful ones. You know, I don’t cry about calls. I don’t you know, disrespect them, call them out their names, or none of that. You know, so, you know, whatever happened happened.

“I just feel like we all should be held accountable – from players, coaches, even the referees. It shouldn’t be one-sided, you know? It should all be fair. It all should be, like I said, we all should be held accountable. You know, it’s not just the players out there, it’s the coaches coaching. You got the referees reffing the game.

“But at the end of the day, I’m a grown man. You know I hold my own, and I take full responsibility for not being able to play for my teammates and you know, the fans and just the organization as a whole.”