It wasn't Danny Ainge versus Tree Rollins revisited! No major tussles in Boston's loss to Philadelphia last night. Nobody got bitten. But Game Five in Boston could get fiery.

When Terry Rozier got called for an offensive foul towards the end of the first half, he simply didn't want to give the ball up to Joel Embiid. Joel had been mouthy from the start, and Terry, as he said later, was just having a little fun.

Embiid accused Terry of throwing punches and not being able to connect due to T-Ro's lack of height. Readers can draw their own conclusions from the video and tweet/photo below. I see no punches by Terry.

Double-technicals were called, and that seems appropriate. The announcer on the video doesn't seem to agree with my finding, but I would be surprised to see further action by the League.

The tussle between T-Ro and Embiid was really just a struggle for control of the ball. But Terry's action reminded me of something Larry Bird would do. It never went past a simple struggle for control. They never ended up on the floor and there were no Tree-bites-man headlines from this one. As a reminder, it was Tree Rollins that bit Danny's finger, not the other way around. Danny play was always fiery, and he never backed down to anyone, including the 7'1" Rollins. I just loved the fire in Terry's action in trying to keep the ball away from Joel.

Normally I shy away from writing about what a player has to say about the next game - unless the speaker is Marcus Smart. Marcus had a pretty solid game last night with 14 points, five rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks.

In reference to the upcoming Game Five in Boston, he had this so say:

We're pit bulls. It's a dogfight, and we're going straight for the neck!

So after the loss in Philly, it is back to Boston on Wednesday. I do find some similarities in Danny Ainge and his incendiary backcourt duo of T-Ro and Smart. All three love to play the game of basketball - they enjoy having some fun on the court - they back down to nobody - and they play with a determined fire that both ignites the fans and produces wins. Game Five should be fun and fiery!

Follow Tom at @TomLaneHC

AP Photo
Video via ESPN

Tom Lane 5/08/2018 08:15:00 AM Edit
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