For one half last night, the current Celtics looked like the old Celtics (of a couple years ago). They flat out dominated Charlotte, holding them to 35 points and pushing them around on defense while Paul Pierce had the hot hand at the other end of the court.
And they talked a lot of trash.
Too much for Stephen Jackson’s liking.
“I can take getting beat, if it’s about basketball,” said Jackson. “But when it gets to a point where you’re being personal and being disrespectful as a man to another man, that’s when I have a problem.”
“It turned disrespectful when certain things were said,” Jackson continued. “You can be emotional, talk to your teammates and do all that, but when it’s getting personal, and you’re directing certain things at people as far as their manhood, that’s when a problem comes up. And I guarantee you, if I wasn’t in this gym that wouldn’t have said that to me.”
That is where the Bobcat’s media relations person jumped in and ended the discussion, according to the Boston Globe.
This is far from the first time, complaints about the Celtics talking go way back, beyond the Knicks last year to Kevin Garnett barking like a dog and slapping the floor in the past. On one level, the Celtics were pulling a little vintage John McEnroe — yelling to fire themselves up more than anything. On another level, the Celtics style has been about intimidating teams, not just beating them, and talking is part of that.
The problem is teams are not that intimidated anymore. They push back. Not the Bobcats, who aren’t good enough to push back if the Celtics have it going, but better teams will. And all the talking in the world will not intimidate teams anymore, teams that see the Celtics as vulnerable.