Boston center Robert Parish said Thursday he had not anticipated that he would be suspended for punching Bill Laimbeer of the Detroit Pistons during Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals Tuesday night.
"I was surprised about the suspension but I wasn't surprised about the ($7,500) fine," Parish said at Logan Airport after getting off an afternoon flight from Detroit. "It's an unfortunate thing that happened, but there's nothing I can do about it now."
In the second quarter of Game 5, the two centers struggled for a rebound underneath the Celtics' basket. Parish, who over the past two years has frequently expressed his dislike for Laimbeer, suddenly swung his arms into the face of the Pistons' player, hitting him twice with his forearms.
Laimbeer dropped to the court, his mouth bloody, but no foul was called. Officials Jack Madden and Jess Kersey later said they did not see what happened.
"Emotions (get) too high, tempers flare," Parish said. "I don't want to get into what happened. Things just got out of hand."
Laimbeer had been fined $5,000 for knocking Larry Bird to the floor during Game 3 Saturday, but was not suspended.