Celtics’ Kelly Olynyk: “I don’t think I’m a dirty player”

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Washington’s Kelly Oubre has been suspended for Game 4 of a feisty playoff series against Boston, the result of him racing halfway across the court to shove Kelly Olynyk to the ground.

Why? Oubre had been dropped by a hard screen on the play with what looked like a shot above the neck — Olynyk was given a foul on the play — and Oubre said he had been “hit multiple times by the same person” and he just reacted.

Olynyk has set hard screens, been physical in a chippy series, and worked to get under the skin of a few Wizards. That’s led to a lot of “Olynyk is a dirty player” talk. Remember, Olynyk was the guy who dislocated Kevin Love‘s arm in the playoffs a couple seasons ago.

Olynyk was asked about his dirty play Saturday, via A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com.

“I don’t think I’m a dirty player. My teammates don’t think I’m a dirty player. It’s basketball. It happens. You have to set a screen, you box out, you have to do a lot of things. It’s not something you focus on. You just go out there and play the next game.”

Olynyk has to be physical for the Celtics, especially when he’s not hitting shots, which has been the case much of this series, particularly Game 3. He did not play well. But he’s out there because of his style of play.

Olynyk is the kind of player fans love if he’s on your team and despise if he’s on the opposition, joining a long line of pests. He’s dirty until he’s your guy, then you love him. He skirts the line, but Olynyk knows where it is — Oubre crossed it and that got him suspended.