Welcome to Matt Barnes Mad Libs, where you never know exactly how the Clippers forward's latest meltdown will unfold.
Following his ejection from L.A.'s 111-103 home win over Oklahoma City on Wednesday, Barnes grabbed his child out of the Staples Center crowd as he made his way to the locker room. Then, as the game continued, Barnes turned to Twitter to vent about his ejection, which occurred after he shoved Serge Ibaka in the chest while standing up for Blake Griffin, who had become entangled with the Thunder forward.
"I love my teammates like family, but I'm DONE standing up for these ------!" Barnes wrote. "All this s--- does is cost me money."
He later deleted the tweet, which USA Today Sports saved with a screen capture.
On Thursday, Barnes posted an apology.
"I've been doing this for [too] long to let my emotions get the best of me," he wrote. "My poor choice of words [and] timing do not reflect who or what I am about. It was very selfish on my part to make this situation about me instead of my teammates that fought their hearts out [and] earned a big win against a tough OKC team. Now I could have took the easy way out and] said, 'My twitter was hacked' But that's not what I'm about. I [accept] full responsibility for all my inappropriate action last night [and] I am truly sorry!"
The scene with his son was priceless. Barnes reached over a railing to lift his son up so that the two could walk towards the tunnel. A security guard waited patiently to join the procession. Here's a GIF look via SB Nation.
Matt Barnes takes his child to the locker room after being ejected. (SB Nation)
Barnes, 33, joined the Clippers on a minimum contract for the 2012-13 season, before re-signing last summer to a three-year, $10.2 million deal.
The veteran forward has run afoul of the NBA law on numerous occasions, and he vented on Twitter after a March incident that also involved Ibaka and Griffin.
Barnes posted a series of messages on his Twitter account following the NBA’s decision to fine, but not suspend, Ibaka for a low blow to Griffin. Ibaka’s foul, originally deemed a flagrant 1 but upgraded by the league office to a flagrant 2, came as the two players were jockeying for position during a Barnes three-point attempt on Sunday night.
Barnes asserted that the punishment would have been harsher had he or Lakers forward Metta World Peace committed a similar foul.
You can INTENTIONALLY grab or hit someone in the balls & not get suspended, but you push someone & get suspended. #ImConfused
Let me or Metta World Peace do that & I guarantee its a 5 game suspension .. I [love how] there are different rules, for different people!
So if I would have back handed Ibaka, I would have been the only one to get suspended right??????????????????????????
Back in February, Barnes was suspended for one game after he received a flagrant 2 for shoving Timberwolves center Greg Stiemsma in the neck. The NBA also suspended Barnes for one game back in November 2012 after he pleaded no contest to “resisting, delaying or obstructing an officer” following an offseason arrest. At the time, Barnes called that suspension a “JOKE.”
The NBA league office will have its hands full on this one. Barnes could potentially face a fine or suspension for his shove of Ibaka, a fine for the nature of his Twitter comments, and a fine for posting a Twitter message during a game, which is not allowed by league rules.
Barnes departed Wednesday with zero points (on 0-for-5 shooting) and four rebounds in eight minutes. Griffin finished with a team-high 22 points (on 8-for-14 shooting), 12 rebounds, seven assists and three steals in 38 minutes. Jamal Crawford added 20 points (on 7-for-13 shooting) off the bench.
Kevin Durant led the Thunder with a game-high 33 points (on 8-for-18 shooting) in the losing effort. Russell Westbrook added 19 points (on 7-for-18 shooting) and 10 assists.
The Clippers improved to 6-3 with the win; the Thunder dropped to 5-2 with the loss.