Dwight Howard (8) of the Atlanta Hawks is ejected from the game following his second technical foul against the Boston Celtics during the third quarter at TD Garden on February 27, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

NBA issues clarification, Howard should not have been ejected

Dwight Howard should not have been ejected for the technical foul he received for hanging on the rim in the Hawks’ 114-98 win over the Celtics on Monday night. The NBA issued a rule clarification less than two hours after the completion of the game in which Howard was ejected for a second technical foul in the third quarter.

According to a release issued by the league: “The second technical foul called tonight on Atlanta’s Dwight Howard for hanging on the rim (4:03 remaining in the third quarter at Boston) should have been deemed non-unsportsmanlike and should not have resulted in his ejection.”

Howard received a technical foul with 9:31 left in the third quarter for shoving the Celtics’ Al Horford after a foul. The second technical foul, called by referee James Williams, came 5:28 later and sent Howard to the locker room. The technical fouls were the 10th and 11th of the season for Howard.

According to NBA rules, non-unsportsmanlike technical fouls that don’t count toward ejection are excessive timeouts, delay of game, having an untucked jersey and hanging on the rim.

Howard said after the game he should not have been ejected.

“That should be more of a warning,” Howard said. “I did the same thing in the first half and nothing happened.”

Turns out Howard was right.

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