NBA Is Investigating Dejounte Murray For Making Contact With Umpire In Hawks’ Game 4 Loss To Celtics, According To Report

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By Webdesk

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The NBA is investigating Atlanta Hawks guard Dejounte Murray for contacting an official late in Sunday’s Game 4 loss to the Boston Celtics. ESPN’s Tim Bontemps. The incident occurred in the closing seconds of the game, as Murray left the field defeated. Video from the arena shows Murray making contact with referee Gediminas Petraitis, though it is not clear whether the contact was intentional or not. He also turned around, pointed and shouted at someone, although according to Bontemps it is not clear to whom. He was escorted off the field by Hawks security.

The competition’s interpretation of the contact between Murray and Petraitis will be key to the final decision on discipline. The NBA rulebook states that “any player or coach guilty of intentional physical contact with an official will be automatically suspended without pay for one game.”

We’ve seen this rule in action this season. In October, Celtics forward Grant Williams was suspended for one game after making contact with an official in a loss to the Chicago Bulls. Now that line could be used for Boston’s postseason opponent.

The Celtics have a 3-1 first-round lead against the Hawks. If they win Game 5 on Tuesday, they will advance to the second round and face the Philadelphia 76ers, who have already completed a sweep of the Brooklyn Nets. The Hawks already had an uphill climb ahead of them if they wanted to upset the Celtics. Atlanta would need to win two games in a row to topple Boston, and two of those games would be on the line. Now they may have to start their comeback without one of their All-Star guards.

A result like that would be a fitting end to an extremely disappointing season for the Hawks. Atlanta is expected to battle for the Eastern Conference crown with Murray and Trae Young in the backcourt. Instead, they are now poised to be knocked out in the second round for the second consecutive season, and this time one of their best players could watch the closeout game from the sidelines.

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