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Jae Crowder and John Wall were involved in a physical confrontation after the final horn sounded following the Boston Celtics’ 117-108 win over the Washington Wizards on Jan. 11, and the Celtics forward opened up on Friday about why the two players clashed in such a heated manner.
Speaking to reporters, Crowder said he believes tensions boiled over because the two teams have a history of smack talk that dates back to last season.
“It started during the game, a lot of disrespectful talk from his side that led to that,” Crowder said, according to the Boston Globe‘s Adam Himmelsbach. “I think it’s been like that a few games since last year.”
After the on-court incident, Himmelsbach reported “there was another confrontation in the hallway that separates the teams’ locker rooms in the bowels of TD Garden.” Police officers were reportedly called in to diffuse the situation and prevent it from escalating.
Crowder’s issues with the Wizards date back to January 2016, when he received a technical foul from referee Tony Brothers for arguing against former Washington head coach Randy Wittman.
“I feel like he was getting away with a lot of curse words and inappropriate words to me, and I retaliated and I got hit,” Crowder said at the time, per the Associated Press (via ESPN.com).
Specifically, Crowder alleged that Wittman “was saying something about me being soft and bleep, bleep, bleep hitting me on the John Wall foul.”
In November, tempers flared again when Wall was ejected after he was slapped with a flagrant-2 foul for making contact with Celtics guard Marcus Smart above the neck.
And at this point, it’s just a matter of time before we find out if the Celtics and Wizards will butt heads once more with their next meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 24, at Verizon Center.