Rajon Rondo has given more insight of his side of the story regarding the brawl that involved several Lakers and Rockets players.
The Los Angeles guard continued to deny that he spit on Rockets guard Chris Paul, an action that reportedly escalated the fight.
“This is the only time I’m going to address this,” Rondo told ESPN on Tuesday. “I had a mouthpiece in my mouth and I exasperated because I was about to tell him to ‘get the [expletive] out of here.’
“Look at my body language [in the video]. My hands on my hips. I turn away for a second. Look at Eric [Gordon] and Melo [Carmelo Anthony] in the video. If they saw me spit, they would have turned their face up or something. They had no reaction.”
He said he would have owned up to spitting on someone and reiterated that his body language didn’t match with someone who had just spat on someone. Rondo also said he got into Paul’s face after Paul poked him in the eye.
“Y’all are playing me with these tricks or these mind games, tampering with the evidence,” Rondo said. “Ain’t no way that I intentionally spit on you with my body language the way it was.
“One, if I spit on you, bottom line, there is not going to be no finger-pointing. If you felt that I just spit on you, then all bets are off. Two, look at my body language. If I spit on you on purpose, I’m going to be ready for a man to swing on me. You ain’t going to have my hands on my hip and my head look away at someone if I spit on them. After the [expletive] goes down, within 30 seconds, you run and tell the sideline reporters that I spit on you? If I spit on you, you are trying to get to me. You not trying to make up a story so you can look like a good guy. It makes no sense to me.”
Rondo then indicated Paul isn’t a squeaky clean guy and called him out for how he left the Clippers to join the Rockets last year.
“Of course, the NBA went with his side because I got three games and he got two,” Rondo said. “Everyone wants to believe Chris Paul is a good guy. They don’t know he’s a horrible teammate. They don’t know how he treats people. Look at what he did last year when he was in LA; trying to get to the Clippers locker room. They don’t want to believe he’s capable of taunting and igniting an incident.
“Exasperating and spitting are two different things. He comes out and says I spit and the media sides with that.”
According to Paul, he had a hard time keeping his cool after he alleged Rondo spit on him and said he felt proud of himself for staying somewhat cool during the incident. However, he’s unhappy he still has to serve a suspension.
“That’s tough,” Paul said. “Somebody spit on you, you know. Play this long and that has never happened, but it is what it is.”
Lakers forward Brandon Ingram got the heftiest punishment of four suspended games after he started the fight with James Harden and argued with a referee.