There are some instances when it's worth getting a technical foul. Maybe you're standing up for a teammate. Maybe you're making a point to the refs.
Dwight Howard was just frustrated—and not even with anyone on the court.
As the Dallas Mavericks, who went on to win 123-120 on Wednesday evening, crawled back into the game in the fourth quarter, Howard started to get annoyed by fans who were heckling him from their cushy courtside seats.
Why were they heckling him?
Well, it goes beyond the fact that he's a star player for the opposing team. D12 had a chance to join the Dallas Mavericks this past offseason, and he instead spurned Mark Cuban and Co. for a shot at glory with a different Texas-based team.
So out came the boo birds.
Eventually, it was too much for Howard to take. After Jose Calderon sent him to the charity stripe instead of letting him throw down an easy dunk, he grabbed the ball and tossed it into the first row, directly at one of the men heckling him.
As NBC Sports' Kurt Helin wrote, "He didn’t throw it with anger, this wasn’t going to hurt anyone, it was a gentle toss, but it was a pretty stupid move nonetheless."
Howard has since been fined for this action, according to Bleacher Report's Jared Zwerling:
Dwight Howard has been fined $25,000 for throwing the ball into the stands with 2:54 remaining in the fourth quarter from Wednesday's game.— Jared Zwerling (@JaredZwerling) November 21, 2013
Howard needs to control himself going forward. There are a number of teams out there who aren't big fans of his, and he isn't exactly the most popular player in the NBA. Between his indecisiveness leaving the Orlando Magic, his ridiculous season with the Los Angeles Lakers and the ensuing Dwightmare Part 2, his image took a 180-degree turn.
Gone is the goofy, gregarious big man who wore a Superman cape at the NBA dunk contest. In his place now is a villain, at least in the minds of many NBA fans.
It's time for Dwight to embrace that new role and work his way back up to the top, but only by accepting the hate and ignoring it—not fueling it.