The Celtics beat the Jazz 115-104 at home on Tuesday night, with Jae Crowder pouring in 21 points on 5-for-6 shooting from behind the three-point line. Crowder’s performance helped Boston advance to 21-14 on the season. So after the game, Crowder probably should have been ecstatic, right?
He was actually pretty pissed off, though, and it seems it’s the Celtics fans who managed to get under his skin. Before the game, some of the fans cheered for Jazz forward Gordon Hayward during player introductions. Hayward is set to become a free agent after the current NBA season, and the thought is that he might consider coming to Boston to play for his former college coach Brad Stevens. So the Celtics fans who cheered were trying to make Hayward feel right at home.
Problem is, Crowder thought they made Hayward feel a little bit too at home, and he was happy to sound off about it after the game ended. "I heard the cheering before the game," Crowder said. "I didn’t like that at all. I think that was a sign of disrespect to me from the fans. That sparked a little fire in me. I just felt disrespected."
After saying that, Crowder also took to social media and—IN ALL CAPS—let Celtics fans know exactly how he felt about their decision to cheer for Hayward:
Additionally, Crowder responded to one Celtics fan who wrote "love it or leave it" to him on Twitter by suggesting that he would have absolutely "no problem leaving it":
For what it’s worth, Crowder is only in the second year of a five-year, $35 million deal with the Celtics, so unless he gets traded away, he’s not going anywhere. But it’s kind of hard to blame Celtics players like Crowder for being frustrated about the attention opposing players receive. Kevin Durant got a similar welcome last season during his visit to TD Garden in Boston.
Then again, can you blame Boston fans for trying to do their part to attract free agents?