Johnson's flagrant foul rescinded

Updated: May 26, 2009, 3:01 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

ORLANDO, Fla. -- The NBA has rescinded the flagrant foul against Orlando Magic guard Anthony Johnson for elbowing Cleveland's Mo Williams in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said after the team's shootaround Tuesday he was glad the league took back the call.

Johnson drove the lane and extended his elbow in the second quarter of the Magic's victory Sunday. Williams was struck around the left eye and knocked to the floor.

Williams was called for a blocking foul, and Johnson was whistled for a flagrant foul. Williams' bleeding, puffy eye needed four stitches. He called the play a cheap shot and said he was still feeling a little woozy.

"My head's still ringing," Williams said. "The game of basketball is not played with throwing punches, throwing elbows."

Johnson refused to get drawn into a verbal war with Williams, who was called for a block on the play that bloodied him.

"I was trying to get to the rim and make a play and I drew a foul," Johnson said. "Elbows are a part of the game -- good and bad. Sometimes it turns out in a bad manner as last night. Elbows are a part of the game, as it is in hockey, as it is in other sports."

Never one to miss a chance to state his case, Van Gundy defended Johnson and challenged the Cavaliers' contention that it was a cheap shot.

"They can say whatever they want," he said. "It's one of the few times you'll see a guy with the ball in his hands driving to shoot getting a flagrant foul. I'm not saying he deserved it or didn't deserve it, it's just a rare play. It's usually the guy on defense making it. There's a lot of things that go on we can complain about and they can complain about.

"I was upset at the number of times that they flopped last night. I mean, Ben Wallace and Mo Williams fell down more times than a baby learning to walk."

The Magic lead the Cavaliers 2-1 in the best-of-seven series. Game 4 is Tuesday night.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.