In an intense game in which both
Williams was one of the players who came over from the Rockets last summer in the trade that sent
Paul, after playing in his first game against the Clippers since forcing the trade, tried to enter his former team's locker room through a hallway that connects both teams, several people who were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter said.
They said that Paul was accompanied by teammates Gerald Green, Ariza and injured star
All were eventually stopped short after security was called. Rockets center Clint Capela stood outside of the Clippers locker room but couldn't get in.
"Our team was in our locker room," Clippers coach
Said a witness: "It was just a lot of barking."
The trash-talking started in the fourth quarter after Griffin (29 points) scored down low on Paul (19 points), who was called for a foul and complained that the foul should have come before the basket.
Griffin said it was an "And-1" which made Mike D'Antoni upset enough to have words with him near the Rockets bench. The Houston coach said Griffin had bumped him during the game. Both were hit with technical fouls.
After Griffin made the free throw to complete a three-point play, the Clippers held a 109-98 lead with 3 minutes 34 seconds left and all the momentum was on their side.
Then, with 1:03 left, Griffin and Ariza exchanged words, this after Ariza had words with Clippers guard Austin Rivers, who was sidelined because of an injured ankle and sitting on the bench.
As Griffin walked off the court with his second technical foul, he removed his jersey and threw it into the stands, yelling and swearing as he walked to the locker room.
"We knew it would be an emotional game in some way," Doc Rivers said. "We didn't know how, but we talked about that.
"So we just were going to play through the game and I thought overall we did that."
Before the game, Paul hugged DeAndre Jordan and Clippers assistant coach Sam Cassell at midcourt.
When the pregame introductions started, he was cheered.
But when the game started and he touched the ball, he was booed.
Then, after the Clippers honored Paul in the first quarter with a video tribute of his Clippers highlights, ending with, "Thank You CP3," he was cheered.
"We didn't mention Chris today," Doc Rivers said. "We talked about the Rockets, honestly.
"Like I said before, Chris was great for us, but Chris decided to leave us. So he's no longer a Clipper and we don't talk about him."