As we told you in the recap, Kevin Garnett wound up in an altercation with Quentin Richardson near the Heat bench near the end of the 4th quarter of the Celtics’ Game One win over the Heat.
Garnett seemed to start the altercation by elbowing Richardson out of the way as he approached Paul Pierce who was on the ground with a shoulder injury. Richardson took offense and the two started jawing at each other.
(Check out all the details in our recap about Heat-Celtics Game One and the Kevin Garnett possible suspension.)
What we didn’t know at the time was if Quentin Richardson ignited the scrum with whatever it was he said as he approached Pierce. Now we have KG’s side.
In his post-game presser, Garnett was asked about the incident. Here’s what the All-Star power forward had to say:
“I just thought Q was standing over him, you know, talking nonsense, and I
just asked him to give him some room. And before you know it, just
mayhem started, you know? With that situation, man, I know these two have
competed against each other in the past and they have history for
bumping heads a little bit. But I’m a vet, I gotta use my head, but only
thing I saw was Paul hurt and that’s the only thing I cared about at
Garnett’s right, he’s got to use his head. And while Garnett immediately exited the scrum after throwing the elbow, he still threw the elbow. There’s going to be questions also about exactly what Richardson’s role in the incident was, as well as Udonis Haslem, as well as any of the Heat players that got up from their seats but didn’t “leave the bench area.” But KG will still be at the center of discussions.
Now, it’s not like it was the punch, and there weren’t any nasty ramifications, so KG may get off with a warning. At the same time, the league has been known to crack down pretty hard in the playoffs when attention is raised on the league. If you can get suspended for getting off a bench, you can get suspended for throwing an elbow and causing a stir.
Expect things to only get more physical and bloody as the series gone on. To say there’s no love lost is to overstate the environment in which love can survive.
Get ready for late ’90’s flashbacks.