Houston Rockets News: Coach J.B. Bickerstaff Hides Dwight Howard Stickum Uses From Refs [VIDEO]
Move over, Deflategate. Stickumgate is here.
In the latest incident in what already has been a bizarre season for Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard, the big man was implicated in the use of stickum during the first quarter Rockets' loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night.
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Stickum is illegal in the NBA.
"As Howard was about to check back into the game, he sprayed his hands at the scorer's table with a can covered in white tape - apparently to hide its contents," the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. "He entered the game as Paul Millsap was at the free-throw line and grabbed the ball after a made first attempt. When Millsap got the ball back it clearly had a foreign substance on it."
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Worse, Rockets coach J.B. Bickerstaff found the can on the scorers table and tried to remove it before the officials found it.
"Official Monty McCutchen grabbed the ball and went to each bench to issue a warning, saying 'Stickum is illegal in the NBA.' After first going to the Hawks bench he made his way toward the Rockets bench. Rockets coach J.B. Bickerstaff slid in front of the can, still at the scorer's table. McCutchen noted he knew what Bickerstaff was hiding.
"No penalty was enforced. The can was then removed from the scorer's table by a member of the Rockets' staff. According to one person, the team did not produce the spray can when ask for it later by an official."
Howard tried to laugh off the incident, according to Yahoo Sports.
"I've been using it for the last five years," Howard said. "It hasn't been a problem. I don't know why people are making a big deal out of it. I do it every game. It's not a big deal. I ain't even tripping."
The biggest question facing Howard is why on earth he is using stickum and why the Rockets assisted in the attempted cover-up.
"Dwight Howard was caught with stickum on his hands which earned his team a warning, and him an eyebrow raised from those wondering how stickum helps your hoops game," Complex Sports reported.
According to his stats, via Yahoo, Howard shot free-throws at a 59 percent clip. He hasn't been above 54.7 percent since and is hovering at 50 percent this season.
Bickerstaff acted as if he knew Howard was putting something illegal on his hands.
Houston, which is fighting for its playoff life, are 1 ½ games ahead of the Utah Jazz for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.