Celtics' Grant Williams reacts to suspension, says bumping ref was unintentional

Grant Williams explains his side of incident that led to suspension originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

Grant Williams is remorseful about his one-game suspension. To a certain extent.

The Boston Celtics forward won't play in Friday's game against the Cleveland Cavaliers after the NBA suspended him for "recklessly making contact with and directing inappropriate language toward a game official" during Monday night's loss to the Chicago Bulls.

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Williams said Thursday he was "disappointed" about letting his team down by having to miss a game and won't appeal the league's ruling.

"When it comes to the punishment, it's just," Williams told reporters at Boston's practice. "I made a mistake. So for me, probably something I won't challenge, especially because of the fact that, one, it's a female referee, and two, it's not something that we want our players to be doing in the league.

"So, no matter if it was inadvertent or not, I've got to be better, I've got to be more mindful, I've got to be more conscious of my surroundings and more conscious of my mental state and not letting things affect me during the game."

But Williams insisted his contact with the official was inadvertent, explaining that he was actually trying to get out of the referee's way after getting up from the floor following a controversial blocking foul.

"I looked up and saw 'block' and I got up and tried to run off in disagreement," Williams said. "And then I look up and I was like, 'Oh crap, I'm about to make contact (with the official).' You've seen the video; I tried to avoid it, and that's when my glute hit her hip. And that's when I made contact.

"... Definitely nowhere near intentional or anything of that nature."

Forsberg: Boston's frontcourt depth takes another hit with Grant suspension

Williams' suspension will test the Celtics' frontcourt depth Friday night as they face a Cavs team with two quality big men in Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen.

With Robert Williams sidelined due to a knee injury, Boston will have to lean on Al Horford, Noah Vonleh, and potentially Luke Kornet or Blake Griffin to man the glass after getting out-rebounded 60-45 by Chicago on Monday night.