BOSTON - Last night's game between the Boston Celtics and the San Antonio Spurs became unexpectedly heated. After all, there is no rivalry or bad blood between the two stalwart basketball franchises and yet, the scene turned ugly very quickly last night after an unfortunate series of events.
About halfway through the third quarter, Celtics point guard Kemba Walker was shuffling on defense when he ran directly into a forceful and aggressively-positioned LaMarcus Aldridge. The screen Aldridge was attempting to set was clearly targeted as something a bit more akin to an offensive foul. However, the officiating crew of the game did not call an offensive foul and that plummeted Walker and Celtics head coach Brad Stevens into a tizzy. They began arguing with and screaming at the referees and it resulted in a technical foul an ejection for Walker, as shared by USA Today.
It was uncharacteristic for Walker to be ejected as he later said that it was the first time he'd been tossed from a game in his entire life. But the scene got even worse when a Celtics fan threw his beer onto the Spurs bench. The move was decidedly an unclassy one and it resulted in the arrest of that fan. We can disagree with how the refs treated Kemba Walker, but that doesn't mean that people who weren't even involved with the situation should be attacked along the way.
Sadly, the Kemba Walker ejection was only the beginning of the end for this particular mid-season game. The Celtics ended up dropping down to 25-10 on the season after they ultimately lost the game to San Antonio by a score of 129-114. It was the second consecutive loss for the Celtics after their previous road falling to the Washington Wizards. There was not much to celebrate in the Spurs game, but it was a bit heartening to see Gordon Hayward perform well, as he ended up leading all Celtics scorers with eighteen points. Walker's final stat line consisted of six points, four assists, and three rebounds on just eighteen minutes of game time.
The chance for the Celtics to rebound comes tonight against the Philadelphia 76ers in a battle of some of the best teams in the Eastern Conference.
Image via Flickr/Mike Kalasnik