Remember when the Chris Paul v. Rajon Rondo “feud” was the news of the day for about 36 hours?
Sigh. Now we’ve got another dust-up, this one involving Stephen Jackson and Paul Pierce. I forgot to note this in my recap of last night’s blowout, but Jackson is claiming that Pierce said something to him during the 3rd quarter after Stack Jack drew a shooting foul on Ray Allen. Via the Globe:
“It turned disrespectful when certain things were said. 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.”
I have no clue what that last line means. Does it mean that if they weren’t in a gym—in public, on national TV—Pierce wouldn’t have had the guts to say whatever he said to Jackson, because Jackson is just too damn dangerous?
I love this little addendum from the Globe’s story.
Mid-answer, however, a Bobcats media relations member cut Jackson off, asking that all questions pertain to the game, even though the on-court conduct was what Jackson was addressing.
Poor Bobcats PR guy/girl.
Pierce is claiming he said nothing offensive.
Anyone in front of a TV and have a recording of the game? I’m currently not, so I can’t slow down the tape to see if the cameras caught Pierce’s alleged trash talk, and if some slow-mo lip-reading might help us play detective. I don’t remember the replays being of any help, though.
I do know that when players start talking about challenges to their “manhood,” that I can make some educated guesses about what word/s Jackson believes he heard from Pierce.
This will all blow over quickly, and we can all move on to Friday’s game. But for today, expect some commentary like this post from Kurt Helin, the outstanding blogger at Pro Basketball Talk (NBC’s new blog) and founder of the Lakers blog (boo!) Forum Blue & Gold:
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.