Dwight Howard: ‘I dont know why people are making a big deal out of it’

Dwight Howard, NBA

Dwight Howard was caught using Stickum, a banned substance in the NBA, during a game against the Hawks.

Houston Rockets’ big man, Dwight Howard, managed to stir some controversy during Saturday night’s game between the Houston Rockets and the Atlanta Hawks, which the Hawks won 109-97.

During the game, Howard was seen walking towards the scorer table, while Hawks’ Paul Millsap was headed to the free-throw line. Howard then sprayed his hands with a can covered in white tape (possibly to hide its contents.) After Millsap’s first free-throw, Howard grabbed the ball. When Millsap got the ball back it clearly had a sticky substance on it. Match official Monty McCutchen was immediately notified by Millsap and he quickly inspected the ball and went to each bench to issue a stern warning, saying ‘Stickum is illegal in the NBA.’

 

Misllsap: ‘I’ve never felt the ball like that ever’

Stickum is an adhesive like substance that is usually sprayed, and can potentially be used to gain an unfair advantage during game play. The NBA’s rule that covers substances like Stickum reads as follows: “All equipment used must be appropriate for basketball. Equipment that is unnatural and designed to increase a player’s height or reach, or to gain an advantage, shall not be used.” Players are generally allowed to use certain substances to improve grip during games.  Substances such as Rosin, both in powder and liquid form, is commonly and legally used to prevent hands from sweating and doesnt give an unfair advantage.

After the game, Millsap and Howard both commented on the sticky situation. “I’ve never felt the ball like that ever,” Millsap said after the game. “It was sticky. It was like super glue or something was on there. I couldn’t get it off my hands. It was the weirdest thing ever.”

Howard did casually admit to using Stickum during the game stating “I do it every game. It’s not a big deal. I ain’t tripping.”

This sticky situation has left a lot of NBA fans and viewers with questions like: Will the NBA issue any punishments to Dwight Howard? Will the Rockets be fined for trying to conceal the spray can used by Howard? Will  the NBA will circulate a memo clarifying what substances can and cannot be used?