Donovan shrugs off NBA's one-game suspension of Allen

  • Bucks guard Grayson Allen fouls Bulls guard Alex Caruso Friday, Jan. 21, 2022, in Milwaukee. The NBA has suspended Allen for one game.

    Bucks guard Grayson Allen fouls Bulls guard Alex Caruso Friday, Jan. 21, 2022, in Milwaukee. The NBA has suspended Allen for one game. Associated Press

Updated 1/23/2022 6:39 PM

At the exact moment Bulls coach Billy Donovan was talking about potential punishments for Milwaukee guard Grayson Allen before Sunday's game at Orlando, the NBA released its decision:

One-game suspension for Allen, to be served Wednesday against Cleveland.


Allen committed a brutal flagrant foul against Bulls guard Alex Caruso on Friday in Milwaukee. Allen was ejected, but the consequences grew the next day when the Bulls discovered Caruso has a broken right wrist, would need surgery and be out six to eight weeks.

Donovan said he spoke to the league about the incident but didn't want to make a call on the proper penalty.

"I think the league has to evaluate those situations based on their criteria they set up," Donovan said. "Maybe people think, 'He should be out as long as Alex is out.' All those things, they're out of my control, they're not my decisions and whatever the league decides to do, we're going to move forward and it's over and done with."

Donovan didn't hold back with his criticism of Allen after Friday's game. Caruso was going up for a dunk when Allen hit him in the air. Caruso did return to the game and obviously didn't think the wrist was broken.

"I still stand by what I said," Donovan said. "It was a really dangerous play. Obviously it proved to be that with him having to have surgery. It is what it is, I was worried about that after the game, just based on talking to him. There was some talk on the bench about him not playing the rest of the game by the medical guys and Alex was pretty adamant that he could play.

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"Obviously I trust the medical guys and we put him back in there and he finished the game. Talking to him after the game and then speaking with him the next morning, I could tell there was certainly something was wrong and that's when we found out he had a break and is going to need surgery."

Donovan said he expects the surgery to be done Monday morning.

Needless to say, the next Bulls-Bucks game will be interesting, but it's not until March 4 at the United Center. Bulls fans have a history of remembering dirty plays by opposing players for a long time. Donovan was asked if he's concerned about retaliation.

"I'm not a real big believer in that stuff," he said. "I understand there's a player code of conduct and things that like. But every game we have got to worry about what we've got to do to put ourselves in the best position to win. That's over and done with, it happened, we've got to move on.

"Whenever we play them again, I'm sure there will be emotions in the game, but I don't feel like the kind of guys that we have here, they're just trying to do what they can do to have a successful season. I think that's really where they'd put their focus on."

The Bucks seemed to celebrate the flagrant foul by tweeting a GIF of Allen on Saturday morning, but later deleted it. The team released a statement Sunday saying it disagreed with the suspension.

Twitter: @McGrawDHSports


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