It came as no surprise Saturday when Adrian Wojnaroski of The Vertical reported the NBA is suspending Wizards forward Kelly Oubre Jr. for Game 4 Sunday. Oubre was ejected for a flagrant foul 2 when he shoved Celtics big man Kelly Olynyk after a hard pick by Olynyk sent Oubre to the floor.
The NBA then released its official statement, citing Oubre for, “Charging and making forceful and unwarranted contact.”
The statement made no mention of the contact with referee Monty McCutchen, although it was widely expected to be a factor in the suspension.
Olynyk set a screen, and his shoulder hit Oubre in the face, sending Oubre to the floor. An incensed Oubre got up and charged at Olynyk, shoving him to the floor and going through ref McCutchen to do so. While the attack on Olynyk merited an ejection and likely a suspension, indirectly charging through the ref all but guaranteed a suspension.
“I don’t think I’m a dirty player,” Olynyk said at practice Saturday, as relayed by MassLive’s Jay King. “My teammates don’t think I’m a dirty player.”
Olynyk was asked about Oubre as well.
“I don’t really know him that well. I thought he was a good guy.”
It is a big loss for the Wizards, for whom Oubre is a valuable sixth man. As the Wizards’ bench continues to struggle invariably throughout the series, losing their best two-way bench player will be a major challenge.
“I feel like he does help those guys a lot,” Jae Crowder said of Oubre at practice. “He brings them a lot of energy off the bench.”
This wasn’t the only battle to take place in Game 3, as Terry Rozier and Brandon Jennings were both ejected for multiple technicals. Somehow, Rozier still seems to be bit unhappy with what went down.
“I’m not worried about him at all,” Rozier said of Jennings Saturday. “He’s not a factor.”
With Oubre out, the Wizards will count on. Jennings to be even more of a factor Sunday.