Sullinger whistled for first NBA tech

January, 28, 2013
1/28/13
6:00
AM ET
Jared Wickerham/Getty ImagesRashard Lewis and Jared Sullinger get tangled up on Sunday at TD Garden.
BOSTON -- Celtics rookie Jared Sullinger got tagged with the first technical foul of his NBA career after getting wrapped up by Miami's Rashard Lewis during Sunday's matinee at TD Garden.

Sullinger got ahead in transition and finished a layup at the rim late in the second quarter. As the ball fell through the cylinder, Lewis reached up to catch it, and found his arms around Sullinger's head. The Boston rookie tried to run back up court, but Lewis did not move his arms. Frustrated, Sullinger delivered a two-handed shove to Lewis' waist to free himself. Referees assessed a double-technical.

Did Sullinger deserve a tech?

"No," said locker neighbor Jeff Green when that question was posed to Sullinger. Boston's rookie, who entered Sunday's game third in the league in personal fouls, politely sidestepped the question as not to draw the ire of the league, but did hint he's hoping the tech will be rescinded upon video review.

"Uh, it is what it is," said Sullinger. "We'll see. We'll see by [Monday] what happens."

Moved into a starting role on Sunday, Sullinger finished with seven points on 3-of-5 shooting with four rebounds and just one foul over 22 minutes, 14 seconds of floor time. Sullinger's overall role was reduced a bit in a game in which the Heat often went small, but he was fine given Boston's 100-98 double-overtime triumph.

"We won, that's all that matters," said Sullinger. "At the end of the day, if we get the W, I'm happy."

And avoiding foul trouble was just a bonus.

"That's a blessing," quipped Sullinger. "I've been praying to God about it, so he answered my prayers."

Chris Forsberg

Celtics reporter, ESPNBoston.com

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Isaiah Thomas
PTS AST STL MIN
21.8 5.8 0.8 28.0
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Sullinger 8.1
AssistsI. Thomas 5.8
StealsM. Smart 1.3
BlocksT. Zeller 0.7