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Kings’ Isaiah Thomas calls Celtics’ Jerryd Bayless a ‘fake tough guy’ after on-court incident (VIDEO)

Feb 8, 2014, 11:00 AM EST

This is yet another example of why you don’t give a max contract to a player with the temperament of DeMarcus Cousins without the presence of any veterans on the roster to help with the team’s leadership. But this is only about him tangentially, so we’ll revisit this in a moment.

Late in the fourth quarter of the Celtics’ blowout win over the Kings on Friday, Sacramento’s Isaiah Thomas got into it with Boston’s Jerryd Bayless. It was a ridiculous incident that was completely unnecessary, and also one that was entirely Thomas’ fault.

After Bayless fell, Thomas stood over him for an extra few seconds, preventing Bayless from standing up. Bayless gave Thomas a shove, and Thomas overreacted to the point where the two needed to be separated by their respective teammates.

The nonsense from Thomas continued once the game was over.

From Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee:

“I don’t like him,” Thomas said of his former AAU teammate. “End of story. He’s a fake tough guy.”

So where does all this animosity come from?

“He knows,” Thomas said.

And why doesn’t Thomas like Bayless?

“Because I don’t,” Thomas said. “That’s why.”

It sounds like there may be some history here, at least in Thomas’ eyes. And as it’s always worth noting anytime players go at each other, some things may have gone on during the game that we simply didn’t see.

But getting back to Cousins, he’s the team’s best player and face of the franchise, given both his level of talent and that huge contract. He’s continually shown a propensity to get into these kinds of situations and then keep it going with silly comments afterward, most recently calling the Bulls’ Mike Dunleavy a “clown” in continuing to hold a grudge for an incident that occurred last season.

The Kings as an organization let Cousins behave this way without repercussion, so Thomas has no reason to believe that he can’t do the same. Sacramento, by the way, lost to a Celtics team playing without Rajon Rondo, and trailed by as many as 18 points.

Thomas shot 9-of-23 from the field and finished with 24 points in 39 minutes. Bayless, meanwhile, was a very efficient 7-of-9 in getting his 19 points in just 18 minutes off the bench.

Maybe that was the source of the frustration.

  1. norcaldeportes - Feb 8, 2014 at 12:52 PM

    Blaming this incident on Cousins is like the Knicks’ coach blaming the guy who passes JR Smith the ball.

    • spthegr8 - Feb 8, 2014 at 7:50 PM

      Maybe I’m missing something buuuuuuuuut, just what exactly did Big Cuz do..??? Looked to me like he was trying to break up the fight!!!

  2. nickmiller63 - Feb 8, 2014 at 12:52 PM

    And? So what. By the way, if you’d like to weave a little more b.s. into your troll-bait article, you could note that Cousins referred to Chris Paul in exactly the same terms.

  3. poundtherock - Feb 8, 2014 at 1:31 PM

    Way to bash Cousins when he was the one separating the scuffle. I suppose it’d be better if all of the players in the NBA were best friends like Magic and Bird. Oh wait…

  4. jimeejohnson - Feb 8, 2014 at 1:34 PM

    Celtics are a fake tough team just like the Lakers and Knicks.

    • therooneyskilledwebster - Feb 8, 2014 at 2:15 PM

      …and the Floppers.

    • ranfan12 - Feb 8, 2014 at 2:17 PM

      But which two of them have more than every other team combined? LOL

      • ranfan12 - Feb 8, 2014 at 2:50 PM

        more championships*

  5. pbtunpaidwriter - Feb 8, 2014 at 1:36 PM

    Cousins was actually trying to break up the fight here and did nothing to escalate it. Yes, he was actually playing peacemaker. People are capable of change.

    Regarding the max contract, 29 other teams would have given him one instead of letting him go. COusins has definitely matured. Think before blindly blasting players, Brett. Words need to make sense when you write.

  6. dudermcrbohan - Feb 8, 2014 at 1:59 PM

    did you even watch the clip? Cousins is breaking it up ya dingus!

    • pbtunpaidwriter - Feb 8, 2014 at 2:43 PM

      Seriously, it’s just easy for Brett to blast Cousins for no reason. Cousins is really maturing and is worth every penny of his max contract.

  7. dollazbagz1587 - Feb 8, 2014 at 2:17 PM

    Well Isaiah Thomas has his ass all in his face what expect him to do just sit there? But everyone in the NBA is a “Fake Tough Guy” don’t nobody want to fight so stop it with that.

    • ranfan12 - Feb 8, 2014 at 6:30 PM

      everyone goes back to normal after the adrenaline wears off

  8. dperk123 - Feb 8, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    What the CELTICS are tough. Your a Clown if you dont think thay are

    • jimeejohnson - Feb 8, 2014 at 2:28 PM

      Okay: they’re tough…but they still suck.

      • maracineanu16 - Feb 8, 2014 at 3:39 PM

        They are rebuilding actually. The kings reaaaally suck, given the talent on the roster

    • kb2408 - Feb 9, 2014 at 4:14 PM

      What’s with spelling celtics in all caps?! I mean, really, who does that???

  9. 5xchamp24 - Feb 8, 2014 at 3:20 PM

    Whos the fake tough guy here? Bayless pushes him while sitting on the floor defenseless. All Thomas does is stand there mouthing at the him.

  10. coachjac30 - Feb 8, 2014 at 3:34 PM

    98% of all NBA players are fake tough guys. They pose and posture, but wouldn’t really fight

  11. jbeagles23 - Feb 8, 2014 at 3:41 PM

    Tge celts know all about fake tough guys Garnett is the worst of them all

  12. stebutt - Feb 8, 2014 at 4:18 PM

    Who was the peace maker? That’s right, DMC. What a ridiculous way to write this story.

  13. detectivejimmymcnulty - Feb 8, 2014 at 5:32 PM

    What in the hell made you go on some anti-Cousins rant? He tried to help Bayless up and pushed Thomas back from him. The bias is strong here.

  14. bbgraf08 - Feb 8, 2014 at 6:28 PM

    Knocking Cousins in this article is utterly ridiculous and borderline stupid. Cousins attempted to help Bayless get up, and then intervened and moved Thomas out of the way. After the game, Cousins shook hands with all of the Celtics and seemed to give Pressey words of encouragement. (Side note: Before the game he expressed respect for the Celtics, especially Sullinger.)

    Brett Pollakoff, the writer of the article, obviously doesn’t like Cousins.

  15. urodaddy07 - Feb 8, 2014 at 9:42 PM

    I never understand this “tough” thing. Its basketball. You play a game. You should play hard and play with passion, but if you feel you need to prove you’re a tough guy on a basketball court, you shouldn’t be playing in the NBA. You want to prove you’re tough; put on a uniform and get shipped off to Afghanistan or go fight in the UFC. This “tough” talk is just stupid.

  16. bballhistorian - Feb 8, 2014 at 9:57 PM

    Brett Pollakoff, probasketballtalk.com’s “fake tough” writer.

  17. gymtruthteller - Feb 8, 2014 at 11:19 PM

    He learned from the best, KG and Pierce and Isiah JR should know fake tough guys. His daddy was one

    • redandgoldenbears - Feb 9, 2014 at 11:02 PM

      Ur an idiot bro

  18. ranfan12 - Feb 9, 2014 at 2:08 AM

    would’ve been an even match with bayless on the ground

  19. topauthority - Feb 9, 2014 at 2:16 AM

    @gymtruthteller
    you twit! This guy is not Isiah Thomas’ kid. Do your damn research!

  20. louhudson23 - Feb 9, 2014 at 4:39 AM

    Please read the article again. He is clearly not talking about what Cousins did or did not do in this specific game or incident.So the idiotic comments about Cousins’ “peacemaker” role are completely beside the point. Rightly or wrongly,he is blaming Cousins similar previous immature actions and lack of leadership as a bad example for Thomas,leading to this kind of behavior by Thomas. An arguable point,perhaps,but again,at no point does he speak of Cousins’ actions on this particular night or incident. Reading comprehension is the point of reading. In fact,if you so blatantly misunderstand what is written,then it really isn’t reading at all …..

    • dexterismyhero - Feb 9, 2014 at 7:38 AM

      Exactly, I was waiting for one of these comments. Bunch of illiterate readers. Fire off your stupid posts when you don’t understand the article. Fake tough internet keyboard types. smh

  21. shauninri - Feb 9, 2014 at 7:16 AM

    Was at the game, albeit about as far away from the play as possible. From my view, which was more from the opposite side of the play than the view shown, it looked like Bayless may have grabbed Thomas’ shorts while Thomas was obviously lingering over Bayless. I think Bayless started off ticked because he may have thought he was undercut by Thomas. Cousins and Sullinger seemed to be the guys on the court responsible for pulling their teammate away from the scrum, although Bayless pushed Sullinger away to go back towards Thomas.

    Concerning the Kings, Cousins has a real low post touch. I was surprised that it wasn’t just “bump and dunk” but he would create space and then effectively find a nice way to finish. He also showed a touch on free throws I did not expect. Like any big guy, Cousins whined some about non-calls but in all honesty on a lot of them he had reason to complain as he draws contact on almost every play. The only time I saw him get frustrated, and I spent a lot of the game looking for it, was the one time he used his shoulder to hard to create some space and got called for the offensive foul. He looked to me like a guy you could build around, although outside of rebounding I would not say he plays with high intensity on defense (witness the number of points Sullinger scored on put backs).

    To my eye, the biggest problem in this game for the Kings was Thomas, who is way too much a shoot first point guard. There were too many times in a Kings offensive set where the Cousins never touched the ball. For someone who penetrates as well as Thomas does, you’d think he’d be able to get Cousins the ball for some easy baskets but he always seemed to shoot off the drive and Cousins would score off of iso plays in the post.

  22. bjswoosh805 - Feb 9, 2014 at 7:01 PM

    I think it would be cool to have an article about this. “Fake Tough Guys in the NBA”
    Kendrick Perkins would be #1 on my list.

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