Lakers guard Rajon Rondo has been known to talk a little trash. But Saturday night it was his brother William that got ejected from Los Angeles’ Game 5 win over Houston following a verbal altercation with Rockets star Russell Westbrook.
Before the Lakers eliminated Houston with a 119-96 win in Lake Buena Vista (Fla.), William Rondo had already been removed from the family section and escorted out of AdventHealth Arena by security as Westbrook watched.
“People at the game, you’re supposed to shut your mouth and watch the game,” Westbrook said afterwards. “That’s the rules, especially when you have families and people here. Apparently, I guess because Rondo was talking s–t, (William) decided he wanted to hop in, too.
“But it’s OK. I mean, you know, it’s all good. I get it. He wanted to take up for his brother, I don’t know what. But that’s it. But those rules stand for everybody, though, no matter who it is – family, whatever. But when you cross that line, then he’s supposed to be at home. There’s no rules or regulations for that.
“He started talking crazy. I don’t play that game.”
And what exactly was this crazy talk that crossed the line?
According to the Lakers guard, it wasn’t crazy at all.
“He didn’t do anything crazy. He called the man ‘trash,’ ” said Rajon Rondo. “Fans do what fans do. He’s my brother first. He didn’t do anything disrespectful.”
Whether that’s disrespectful is open for debate – but the NBA had the last word. The league had warned guests not to be verbally aggressive at the games or to enter the floor. William Rondo – who’s in charge of the barbers, manicurists and hair braiders at the bubble – apparently crossed that line.
Westbrook and Rajon Rondo had been going back and forth before William Rondo threw oil on the verbal fire. Westbrook appeared to ask William Rondo what he said, and the latter waved goodbye to the soon-to-be-eliminated guard.
But it was William Rondo that left first, escorted out by security.
It wasn’t the first time Westbrook has had a verbal altercation with a fan. Last season playing for Oklahoma City, he had a heated exchange with a courtside fan in Utah.
The fan Shane Keisel had told Westbrook to “get on your knees like you’re used to.” Westbrook responded by telling him “I’ll f–k you up.” The fan got banned by the Jazz, and Westbrook fined $25,000 by the NBA.