With 3:38 remaining in the second quarter of a Wednesday night game between the Orlando Magic and the Charlotte Bobcats, Magic All-Star center Dwight Howard was assessed a technical foul after being whistled for a 10-second violation while shooting a free throw. The technical is Howard's 18th on the season and, if it's not rescinded upon league review, will require Howard to serve a one-game suspension.
The Associated Press sets the scene.
The poor-shooting Howard has always been deliberate at the line, and referee Bennett Salvatore called a violation for taking too long to attempt his second shot late in the second quarter Wednesday at Charlotte. As the crowd jeered, Howard tossed the ball away from any official. Salvatore immediately gave Howard a technical.
Howard and the Magic next play on Sunday, when they host the Chicago Bulls at Amway Center.
Back on March 5, Howard was suspended for one game by the league office after he received his 16th technical foul. NBA league rules mandate than players must serve a one-game suspension for every two technicals they receive after their 16th technical.
Howard and his coach, Stan Van Gundy, have griped about NBA referees' treatment of Howard all season. Van Gundy found himself in hot water when he made some harsh comments about NBA commissioner David Stern while defending Howard.
The suspension will not have meaningful playoff implications. The Magic are essentially locked into the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference, as they trail the No. 3 seed Miami Heat by 5.5 games and lead the No. 5 seed Atlanta Hawks by five games with just four games to play.