Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
After a video review, the referees ejected both Humphries and Rondo for fighting — crew chief James Capers later explained to a pool reporter that, by going into the stands, the two were involved in a fight that required ejection. Humphries earned two technical fouls, including one for taking Garnett to the floor with a second personal foul after the initial contact.
But it’s Rondo that is likely to be in the crosshairs of the league. As Capers noted, “Rondo initiated everything that proceeded after the foul.”
As for whether Garnett or Wallace threw a punch, Capers added, “As we reviewed it, no. They aggressively went to one another, and they basically pushed and extended on one another, but there was not a punch thrown.”
Let me get right to the point, I have do not have a problem with Rajon Rondo pushing Kris Humphries in retaliation for that hard foul on Kevin Garnett. With all due respect to WEEI’s Mike Petraglia, I never saw a punch. I’m not sure anyone can watch the video and definitively state punches were (or were not) thrown.
But… I have tremendous respect for a 6-1, 180 lbs point guard with the BALLS to take on someone 8 inches and 50 lbs heavier. Rondo was right in the mix from the get-go. It’s not like he ran 30 feet like Gerald Wallace. He pushed Humphries. Had the skirmish happened at mid-court and not under the basket where players are more prone to fall over camera guys, this might be a non-story.
Will he get suspended? Probably. Whether you like it or not, he’s a repeat offender with a growing reputation. I’m guessing 2-3 games. Howard Beck of the New York Times predicts a “lengthy” suspension.
The bigger story to come out of last night’s game was Doc Rivers’ comments about his team:
“If I’m Brooklyn and the league, you’ve got to think we’re pretty soft the way we’re playing,” Rivers said. “We’re a soft team right now; we have no toughness.
“That stuff’s not toughness,” Rivers said. “All that stuff, that’s not toughness.”
The Celtics are struggling. They’re a .500 team without cohesion and toughness. It’s possible Doc is calling out the team with the hopes it will rally the troops. Let’s hope it works.
One other note, I was unable to find any updates on Jeff Green’s knee injury.
The rest of the links:
ESPN Boston – Rondo shows some fight | Terry on Humphries: He’s soft | Rapid Reaction: Nets 95 – Celtics 83 | Herald – Celtics sent to the showers | Celtics don’t pull punches | Globe – Celtics play the waiting game | Celtics can’t KO Nets | Nets didn’t back down | CSNNE – Garnett: We have to protect each other, we consider ourselves family | Garnett: This ain’t the girl scouts | Celtics home court intimidation factor likely gone | WEEI – Celtics lose, Rondo ejected, Green hurt | NYT – Nets show toughness, keep their cool