According to three people with knowledge of the situation, the teams that went back and forth in a brilliant Game 7 of their first-round playoff series on Saturday night (a 126-121 Clippers win) followed the on-court action by engaging in a heated verbal back-and-forth in the tunnel that connects the locker rooms at Staples Center. The people spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.
The incident came in two waves, with most of the Warriors in the hallway at one point along with several Clippers. The police were called to assist, though it’s not believed any punches were thrown.
After the game ended, the Warriors thought they heard a Clippers assistant coach yell, “It’s a little quiet in there,” several times outside their locker room, multiple sources said. Warriors guards Stephen Curry and Steve Blake were the first to dart from the locker room and confronted some Clippers ball boys in the hallway between both locker rooms, a source said. The Warriors’ coaching staff and players followed Curry and Blake into the hallway where they also confronted Clippers staff members and some players, including forward Glen Davis, sources said.
Jeremiah Rivers, the son of Clippers coach Doc Rivers, said on Twitter that Warriors center Marreese Speights “barged into” the Clippers’ locker room, but that was not confirmed. He later deleted the tweet. Another source said Davis and Speights yelled at each other with Speights having to be held back. No punches were thrown, but a lot of screaming took place. The Los Angeles Police Department and game security calmed the situation, a source said.
We’ll see if there are any repercussions from the league surrounding this, although as it was a typical “NBA fight” — lots of words, some shoving, no punches — there likely will be no action taken.
Joel Embiid on Monday will have an MRI on his injured left knee and is now listed as out indefinitely.
Embiid has been experiencing swelling and soreness in the left knee injury that has caused him to miss 16 out of the last 17 games. Bryan Colangelo announced back on Feb. 11 that Embiid has a minor meniscal tear. In his most recent press conference last Friday, Colangelo had targeted this Friday’s home game against the Knicks as a possibility for Embiid’s return. Now, that isn’t the case.
Embiid had been the biggest ray of hope for Philadelphia, but the 76ers shouldn’t chase watchability down the stretch. Sit Embiid until he’s fully healthy and secure the best draft position possible.
Maybe Embiid’s body just can’t handle the rigors of NBA basketball, but Philadelphia has no choice but to hope for the best with him and Simmons. And hope the nail the their first-round pick this year and get the Lakers’ first-rounder.
This could still be a dangerously good team in coming years. The Process created that potential.
But the threat of injury always looms around the corner, maybe especially so for Embiid.
Report: Knicks’ Joakim Noah likely to miss rest of season after knee surgery
Prepare for the talk next fall about Noah feeling refreshed and ready to help the Knicks.
But this surgery won’t reverse the underlying problem: Noah is a 31-year-old big man with heavy mileage. He can manage his knees, but it’s probably too late for him to regain enough athleticism to reliably contribute.
Just three years and $55 million+ remaining on his contract, which already looked like the NBA’s worst deal and is now even more unfavorable.
Buddy Hield: Vivek Ranadive told me at Kings-Pelicans games, ‘We’re still going to get you’