After receiving a suspension for Game 5, Hawks’ Deyonte Murray believes NBA coaches and referees should also be held accountable


This Monday, the NBA has finally decided to punish Dejounte Murray after making contact with an official and verbally abusing him to his face at the end of Game 4 between the Hawks and the Celtics on Sunday night. 

The league announced that the Hawks player has been suspended for one game without pay, as it may well have been his last game of the season, considering that Atlanta trail Boston 3-1 in the best-of-seven series of the Eastern Conference’s first-round of the playoffs.

Take a look at the incident where Murray yelled at the referee after this past Sunday’s loss to Boston:

“Beating Boston in the Garden in the situation we’re in right now, we all know is a challenge in and of itself,” Hawks coach Quin Snyder said. “[But] it’s something the entire group has to absorb.”

Murray is a sensible loss for his club, especially after he posted 23 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists in 40 minutes on Sunday. If Atlanta faces another defeat, the Celtics will advance to face the Philadelphia 76ers in the East’s semifinals.

“Dejounte recognizes his part in the situation. That’s just not something you can do,” Snyder assured. “You’d have to ask him directly as far as what had transpired previously. I think there was frustration over the course of the game that built up, and he didn’t handle it the way that he needs to. He knows that. We talked about it.”

The NBA has traditionally taken hard stances against any player or coach who show disrespectful behaviour against game officials, just as earlier this campaign, Celtics fowards Grant Williams was also suspended for a match after making contact with a referee after he was ejected from the fourth quarter in a loss to Chicago back in October.

If this was Murray’s last game of the season, he’d have averaged 25.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 5.8 assists and 2.3 steals throughout the four contest in this series for Atlanta.

The player, who is in his first tournament defending the Hawks jersey, came to Georgia after being acquired in a trade with the San Antonio Spurs last offseason.

Murray thinks that both coaches and officials should also be held accountable when mistakes are made

After the player was notified he was to miss Game 5 of the series in Boston, the player talked to the press after Monday’s practice. Murray admits his faults, but says that the only way the NBA can grow is also holding referees accountable for their mistakes, not just the players.

Check out what the guard said after he received the notice of his suspension:

“Who starts [for Murray]? I’m not sure,” coach Snyder expressed. “Normally, historically, when one of those guards is out, you could start another guard, or you can go big. We just found all this out. We need to meet as a staff and talk about it and see what makes the most sense for us relative to our opponent.

“Dejounte, not just in this series, but over the course of the year, has been a real important part of what our team does. We’ve got to understand that contributions are going to have to come from a number of different players across the board. I don’t think you can plug and play in a situation like this. Everybody’s got to do their part.”

After playing 76 contests this 2022/23 season, Murray averaged 20.5 points, 5.3 rebounds and 6.1 assists.