NBA – Tension hit another level after the Rockets-Clippers game on Monday night. Rockets players James Harden, Gerald Green, Trevor Ariza pushed their way into the Clippers’ locker room after the game to confront Austin Rivers. It was so intense that the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) dispatched a unit to help stadium security to diffuse the situation.
Houston Rockets’ players James Harden, Trevor Ariza and Gerald Green pushed into Clippers locker room post-game looking to confront Austin Rivers, league sources tell ESPN. Security escorted Rockets out before anything turned physical.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 16, 2018
This was a spillover from an already emotionally charged game. Blake Griffin and Trevor Ariza were ejected in the fourth quarter after Griffin stepped in when Ariza had a heated exchange of words with Patrick Beverley and Austin Rivers, who were behind the team bench, sitting out the game with respective injuries.
This is just another chapter in an ever-evolving storyline between both clubs. The Clippers traded Chris Paul to the Rockets in the off-season for Patrick Beverley, Sam Dekker, and Montrezl Harrell. There have been some speculations that it was Paul’s soured relationship with Griffin that prompted his request to be traded to Houston. It also has been alluded that Head Coach Doc Rivers’ treatment (favoritism) for his son, Austin, negatively affected the relationship between Paul and his coach at the time.
All of this percolating bad blood between these two teams is planting the seeds of a bitter rivalry in the Western Conference. Unfortunately for Paul, he did not get to savor a revenge game against his former team, with the Clippers coming away with the win at home, 113-102.