Earlier this year, we “celebrated” the 15th anniversary of the infamous fight that took place between Chris Childs and Kobe Bryant back in April 2000 by putting together a frame-by-frame recap of it. You can check it out here. And now, we have a better understanding of what happened that night during a Lakers/Knicks game thanks to an interview that Childs just did.

Last week, the former Knick sat down with Knicks Blog Radio to discuss, amongst other things, his fight with Kobe. Childs talked about what led to punches being thrown and also discussed how he probably could have injured Kobe if he really wanted to. Here’s a transcript of Childs’ comments, courtesy of the New York Post:

“He was a young player at the time. He had to challenge someone. I happened to be that guy.

“A couple of times going around screens, I played tight defense, it’s physical down there and he hit me with an elbow. I’m fine with that, but don’t do it above the shoulders.’’

Childs said he asked the officials: “Are you going to do anything about this? They put their hands up: ‘What you want me do?’

“‘No problem, I’ll take care of that.’ I said: ‘Young fella, do that again, there’s going to be a problem.’ [Kobe said]: ‘What are you going to do?’

“We go around the pick and he hit me again. By that time, enough is enough. I’m back home. This young guy is trying me. I walk up to him — if you watch it, he hits me with a little shoulder. He’s 6-6. I’m 6-3 at the time. I got to get him off of me. I give him a little head nudge. From that point on, it’s game on. I took a few boxing lessons. I know how to defend myself.

“When I hit him, I didn’t want to hurt him. I knew he was an up-and-coming guy. I remember back in the day watching Kermit Washington hit Rudy T [with an infamous punch during a game in 1977]. I didn’t want to get that label of hurting a guy’s career. So I just happened to tap him and let him know you’re trying the wrong guy.’"

So one of the most memorable NBA fights of all time could have been even worse? Damn, Kobe.

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[via New York Post]