DeMarcus Cousins and Kevin Durant were almost involved in an on-court altercation at the end of the Warriors/Pelicans game on Monday night. With a little more than a minute remaining in the game and Golden State comfortably ahead, the two got tangled up on a play and briefly started arguing with one another before a referee stepped in, gave both of them technical fouls, and ejected them from the contest. The two players exchanged a few more words before leaving the court, but their teammates ultimately stepped in and separated them before things got physical.
It doesn’t sound like the altercation ended there, though. Shortly after Cousins and Durant made their way back into their respective locker rooms, local WVLA reporter Morgan Beard sent out a tweet indicating that something may have almost gone down between Cousins and Durant as they made their final exits. Beard described it as an "almost-altercation" and suggested that Cousins and Durant may have nearly crossed paths in the back corridors of Smoothie King Arena and continued what started out on the court. He reported that security had to close a couple doors to keep Cousins and Durant separated.
The Advocate also confirmed extra security was brought in to keep Cousins and Durant apart after the game.
Fortunately, that’s as far as things got, and cooler heads prevailed. Cousins didn’t speak with the media after the game, but Durant did, and while he was somewhat critical of the game’s referees for being too quick to throw him and Cousins out, he also said he needs to be more "poised" during games.
"I thought he threw us out pretty quick, to be honest. We got in each other’s faces, but that’s just how it is," Durant said. "I got to be more focused. I got to be more poised. I can’t let anybody take me off my game. I’ve been in the league too long. Especially somebody like Cousins, we know that he’s feisty, we know that he’s emotional. We know that he plays that way so I can’t get involved in that. That’s who he is, I got to be me."
Additionally, Durant told reporters he has no interest in fighting Cousins or anyone else. "I’m not going to fight nobody," Durant said. "I don’t want to get injured. I don’t want to get suspended. I love to play. I love making money for my family. I’m not trying to get suspended or get in no fights with nobody."
Warriors coach Steve Kerr also spoke about the altercation—the one that took place on the court—and said that his team hasn’t been "composed" enough in recent weeks. In addition to getting ejected on Monday night, Durant was also ejected from a recent game against the Magic, and Kerr said that Durant getting technical fouls and ejections is something that has to stop.
"We’re a championship team," Kerr said. "We got to be poised and we got to execute out there. We’re getting way too emotional."
Cousins and Durant are both expected to be fined by the NBA after what happened on Monday night. Their fines will likely be in the $25,000 range, but if the league finds any evidence of a disturbance between the two in the back, their fines could be even more. The Warriors and Pelicans won’t play again until April.