The NBA has suspended Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard for one game without pay next season after his foul in Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals against the Golden State Warriors was upgraded to a Flagrant 1, the league announced Friday.
Game 5’s flagrant foul was Howard’s fourth of the postseason.
Howard will serve his suspension in the first game of the 2015-16 season in which he is physically able and eligible to play.
Howard’s foul was upgraded after the league said he made unnecessary contact with his forearm to the neck area of Warriors guard Andre Iguodala with less than four minutes remaining in Golden State’s 104-90 series clinching victory.
Howard would have been suspended for Game 6 had Houston extended the series.
Howard and Warriors center Andrew Bogut received technicals for shoving each other in the second quarter of Game 5. Both technical fouls were rescinded.
Howard averaged 16.4 points, 14 rebounds and 2.3 blocks while shooting 58 percent from the floor during the Rockets 17 postseason games.
- Scooby Axson