The Los Angeles Clippers went into their locker room down nearly double digits to the Oklahoma City Thunder and without reserve tough guy Matt Barnes for the second half of Wednesday night’s game. Barnes put an end to a rock, paper, scissors bout between Thunder forward Serge Ibaka and the Clippers’ Blake Griffin, by turning it into a shoving match between himself and himself.
The much anticipated look-see into the Western Conference Finals was interrupted when the Thunder’s third scoring option and best defensive player was also ejected for being the recipient of a Barnes “cheap-shove.” A scoreless Barnes gave the Clippers a second half advantage, while the absence of Ibaka allowed Griffin free access to the rim and defensive rebounds, which lead to jail breaks at the offensive end of the floor.
The antics of Barnes proved costly for the Thunder, who lost to the Clippers in their first meeting of the season, but the former UCLA forward’s Twitter response to the events that led to his suspension were as disturbing as the melee that seems to follow him wherever he goes. “I love my teammates, but I’m DONE,” stated Barnes. “All this does is cost me money.”
It’s not certain whether Barnes was insinuating that he was done coming to the aid of Griffin, who has a league wide reputation of being a pro basketball player and not a gangster, or if he was done using his deteriorating skills as a basketball player to evoke a thuggish brand of professional basketball that has no place in today’s NBA.
ChristopherBrown is an NBA writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @whatrockschris. Like him on Facebook. Christopher- Rant Sports.