So what in the holy hell happened last night?
There was some kind of confrontation between Matt Barnes and Milwaukee Bucks center John Henson. Usually if Matt Barnes is involved there really does not have to be much of a reason for a situation to develop (just ask Derek Fisher), but lets take a look at the timeline of events.
Late in the fourth quarter of a hard fought and increasingly chippy game, Lance Stephenson picks up a JaMychal Green miss and tries for a put-back and is flagrantly fouled by John Henson. Here's what it looked like:
It was a hard foul and was around the neck and head area, which did deserve a flagrant 1 foul. However, notice two things:
1) Lance Stephenson gets up like the Malace in the Palace is going to start all over again. And in a surprising response of restraint, which could be contributed to a cooler head and possibly to be surrounded by two officials and four other Milwaukee Bucks, he demurs and heads to the other side of the court to shoot free throws.
2) John Henson and Matt Barnes have words. Normally you may think that a guy with the veteran presence of a Barnes might be a calming influence. I'm going to say not in this case. Barnes has been visibly upset in the past three games, and I was almost certain he wanted to get tossed from the blowout against the Rockets on Monday
These have been some frustrating for this group of Grizzlies due to a plethora of injuries and hitting a rather difficult part of the schedule. All seemed to be well until the last five seconds of the game.
Here is what it looked like:
A couple of things from this:
1) John Henson is dumb. It was a nice block. You weren't blocking Michael Jordan of the 96 Bulls in the NBA Finals. This was blocking Matt Barnes in a 10 point on essentially a D-League roster. Plus, you've now consecutively fouled Lance Stephenson hard and mean mugged to Matt Barnes. What's next? Wanna tell ZBo his suits look cheap? Wanna tell Chris Andersen that tattoos are stupid? Wanna tell TA that his defense is over-rated and that Future sucks?
2) Both Barnes and Henson earn a technical foul. Henson gets the gate because of his second tech. This is Barnes first, and it appears from the notes that he was ejected, but it was rescinded. Here is that stat sheet for this one:
So it appears that Barnes was not ejected from the game, which makes him leaving the court even stranger.
3) Like him or not, Barnes actually does ok up until sprinting off in the locker room. Guys get frustrated losing games, especially losing games where other younger and less accomplished players are showing them up. Sprinting off to the locker room is where all defense of Matt should come to an end. It looks as though HCDJ knows what is happening and is trying to keep everyone's booties cool, until Barns does that spin move that a middle school student would do just before clocking another kid during a junior high fight.
4) What happens next is a mystery. It appears as though Barnes does just go off into the Grizzlies locker room, but several Buck's reporters say otherwise.
Several sources said Barnes entered Bucks locker room after game looking for Henson.— Gery Woelfel (@GeryWoelfel) March 18, 2016
Both Henson and Barnes were escorted from BC by a spate of security guards.— Gery Woelfel (@GeryWoelfel) March 18, 2016
Not good at all.
5) I'm not even touching the John Henson has a black eye thing that was going around last night.
6) I like Gus Johnson. I liked him during March Madness. I like Big XII football and he frequently calls insane games that I watch. And I know that a certain amount of being a play-by-play guy is homerism, but come on dude. Saying that John Henson should go back to the lockeroom, Vaseline up and get ready for the fight that will ensue, and then getting indignant when it actually could have happened is silly. Pick a lane and stay in it.
This is really not a good situation for the Grizzlies. The league will most certainly take action against both guys, and in Matt Barnes case it chase been avoided. In 2012, Zach Randolph and Kendrick Perkins got into the "I'll beat you ass" sprint to the lockeroom that cost ZBo $25,000 dollars. This will probably be the floor for Matt BArnes, who has already been suspended for three games this season for an off the court issue with former Knicks coach Derek Fisher. IF you ask me, I think he will be suspended for one game, maybe more, and he will have earned it.
The Grizzlies host the Los Angeles Clippers tommorow night.