Early Tuesday morning, BDL’s Eric Freeman brought you the story of how an on-court squabble between Kevin Garnett and Carmelo Anthony during the Boston Celtics’ Monday night road win over the New York Knicks escalated into a near-incident after the game, with Anthony waiting to confront Garnett outside the Celtics’ team bus. Nothing wound up coming of it, though, and the two players eventually went their separate ways.
Now, thanks to the all-seeing eye of TMZ, we can see exactly how much nothing transpired, in a grainy and shaky video featuring Anthony and Garnett both separated and surrounded by a mass of humanity. No throwdown, no fisticuffs, no donnybrook — just some people who were not KG or Melo being pushed and shoved, some yelling and arguing. Not quite a clash of the titans, but that’s probably for the best for both Celtics and Knicks fans.
Here’s the tale of the tape, from TMZ:
The incident went down in front of the Celtics team bus inside Madison Square Garden — just a short time after things got physical between the two NBA superstars on the court.
In the video, both men can be seen yelling and approaching each other aggressively as security scrambles to keep them apart. [...]
Eventually, security was able to separate the big men … and KG boarded the team bus.
What exactly inflamed Anthony’s passions so much remains unclear; Garnett didn’t speak to reporters following Celtics practice on Tuesday, and while Anthony did, he didn’t get into specifics about the on-court trash talk. (Plenty of outlets have run with one version of events that they claim sparked the fire, but, as far as I can tell, that version is unsourced and has no verifiable basis, so “remains unclear” seems like a much more reasonable tack to take.)
The Knicks’ leading scorer did say, however, that Boston’s defensive leader went above and beyond with his comments, and that the two eventually did hash it out over the phone, according to Brian Mahoney of The Associated Press:
“There’s certain things that you just don’t say to men, another man,” Anthony said. “I felt like we crossed a line, but like I said, we both had an understanding right now, we handled it the way we handled it. Nobody needs to know what was said behind closed doors, so that situation was handled.” [...]
The NBA is investigating and has video evidence. It could decide to penalize Anthony, who said he shouldn’t be suspended.
“Nothing happened for me to be suspended,” he said. “I wanted to talk to KG. I think it was something we both needed to get off our chest and see what really the problem was. No altercations, it was just some words and a conversation that we needed to have.”
Whether Anthony’s initial false starts at having that “conversation” result in league discipline remains to be seen. Memphis Grizzlies power forward Zach Randolph received a $25,000 fine after a league inquiry into his postgame trip through a set of FedEx Forum double doors separating the Grizzlies’ side of the locker room area from the visiting team’s section, where he presumably sought Oklahoma City Thunder center Kendrick Perkins, after the two were ejected for an on-court argument back in November. Randolph didn’t receive a suspension, though.
The Knicks’ next game comes Thursday against the Indiana Pacers, who rank fourth in the Eastern Conference and are coming off a statement win over the top-seeded Miami Heat on Tuesday night.