Noah sounds off on KG ... again
January, 19, 2013
By Chris Forsberg | ESPNBoston.com
BOSTON -- Chicago Bulls big man Joakim Noah just couldn't resist sounding off on rival Kevin Garnett after Friday's 100-99 overtime triumph over the Boston Celtics.
Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty ImagesJoakim Noah gets a shot up over Kevin Garnett.
After helping to limit Garnett to 16 points on 5-of-16 shooting and seven rebounds over 39 minutes, Noah sounded off while discussing how Chicago contained Boston's All-Star center.
"Just playing sound defense, just contesting his shots, he's a helluva competitor, he's always on some bulls---," Noah said.
Asked what he meant by that, Noah added, "Just trying to throw elbows, cheap shots, just trying to get you off your game. But he's a vet, he's been doing this a long time but it's all right."
Does Garnett cross the line with his antics?
"Nah, when we lose I feel like he crosses the line," Noah said. "But since we've been beating their [butts] I'm cool with it."
Given their past history -- with plenty of shoving on the court and barking off it -- Noah was asked if the two players would ever be cool with each other.
"He wants to win and I want to win," said Noah. "I don't think it will ever be cool."
Ironically, Garnett actually offered Noah a bit of praise before Friday's game, suggesting that both he and New York's Tyson Chandler likely deserved a starting All-Star spot more than Garnett, who was voted into his 15th appearance on Thursday.
While Noah admitted after Friday's game that he might have talked a bit too much while adding some fire to the rivalry a few years back, that didn't stop him from keeping the chatter going.
"I feel like I was young, maybe talking a little bit too much," Noah said. "What happens on the court should stay on the court. I was pretty vocal about it, but at the end of the day the only thing that matters is winning or losing basketball games. You don't have to like your opponents, it's all right. At the end of the day the only thing I'm worried about is this team and I think that he's the same way with Boston. [Garnett is] worried about his team and getting them going -- I'm just happy that we beat them twice, they beat us once. It was a great game tonight, we fought hard and the Bulls are on the way up. We're not even playing with our MVP, I know [Derrick Rose is] hungry to get back, it's all positive."
ESPN Chicago's Nick Friedell contributed to this report.