Basketball / Sports

Police intervened in Warriors-Clippers hallway spat

LOS ANGELES -- The Warriors and Clippers engaged in a verbal confrontation in a Staples Center hallway after Game7, Los Angeles coach Doc Rivers confirmed Sunday.

Rivers downplayed the latest incident between the two teams, telling reporters that besides people talking loudly, "it was much to do about nothing."

After the Warriors' 126-121 loss Saturday, there was shouting near Golden State's locker room about how quiet it was inside. Ultimately, Warriors big man Marreese Speights was among the players involved along with the Clippers' Glen Davis as police helped make sure the situation did not escalate.

Jeremiah Rivers, Doc Rivers' son, reacted on Twitter with a disparaging remark about Speights before deleting it.

It wasn't all bad blood between the teams. Clippers guard Jamal Crawford, the former Warriors player, had kind words for Stephen Curry in a different hallway after the game and praised his opponents.

"You have to really tip your hat to Golden State," said Crawford, who came off the bench to score 22 points. "They pushed us to the limit, and those guys would just not go away.

"I think nobody else could have executed like they did with their coaching staff leading those guys except for Mark Jackson. He really gave those guys confidence and believed in them."

--Warriors center Jermaine O'Neal is considering retirement, and if an injury-marred, three-minute Game7 performance was his final game, the disappointment was noticeable.

"That's a tough pill to swallow, to be quite honest," said O'Neal, a six-time All-Star who termed his 18-year NBA career "a fantastic run."

O'Neal, 35, had a blocked shot and missed his only field goal attempt in playing two days after suffering a bruised right kneecap in a collision with Davis that he believed to be a dirty play. He did start earlier in the series, taking injured center Andrew Bogut's spot in the lineup before volunteering to come off the bench so the Warriors could go to a smaller lineup.

O'Neal said he would consult with his wife and children while deciding whether to continue his NBA career. Either way, he will be following the Warriors.

"I know they're going to be great next year, and I'm going to be one of their biggest fans if I'm not playing," O'Neal said.

"I appreciate what my teammates have done for me this year, injecting life back into my soul."

--Curry, Steve Blake and Andre Iguodala serve as vice presidents on the National Basketball Players Association's executive committee, and each of them was affected deeply by the Donald Sterling controversy.

"Along with Steph and Andre, you've got to think about the union, the players as a whole," Blake said.

"Just in general, hate like that is not acceptable no matter what race you are, religion, any of that. So I took it as personally as anyone else."--

(c)2014 The Oakland Tribune (Oakland, Calif.)

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