Pro Football Hall of Famer and Fox personality Shannon Sharpe appeared to spark an altercation with the entire Memphis Grizzlies team and Tee Morant on Friday night during their game against the Los Angeles Lakers at Crypto.com Arena.
Sharpe was sitting courtside at the game when the altercation started just before halftime. Both Ja Morant and Dillon Brooks were seen talking at Sharpe as they started walking off the court for the locker rooms. Before they got to the tunnel, however, things erupted.
Almost the entire Grizzlies bench, led by 6-foot-11 center Steven Adams, suddenly charged at Sharpe — which prompted security to jump in and try to hold them back.
Tee Morant, Ja's father, then came up to Sharpe and the larger group from the side, and the two had to be separated by security. Sharpe and the elder Morant were then walked off the floor in different directions by security, but both returned to their seats for the second half.
The cause of the altercation, at least from Sharpe’s point of view, was incredibly stupid.
Sharpe told ESPN’s Dave McMenamin the fight started after Sharpe told Brooks he “was too small to guard LeBron [James].”
“They didn’t want this smoke, Dave,” Sharpe told ESPN. “They do all that talking and jockeying and I ain’t about that jockeying. It started with Dillon Brooks. I said he was too small to guard LeBron. He said, ‘F***’ me. I said, ‘F*** you’ back. He started to come at me and I said, ‘You don’t want these problems.’
“And then Ja came out of nowhere talking. He definitely didn’t want these problems. Then the dad came and he obviously didn’t want no problems. But I wanted anything they had. Don’t let these fools fool you now.”
It's not exactly clear why Sharpe, who is technically a member of the media, started heckling Brooks in the first place. And, obviously, Brooks has a much better chance at guarding James than the 54-year-old retired tight end does.
Tee Morant told Bleacher Report's Chris Haynes after the altercation that both he and Sharpe "are good," and that he has "nothing but love for him." The two then made up during the third quarter.
The Lakers rallied in the fourth quarter to take the 122-121 win, which snapped Memphis' 11-game win streak. Sharpe was still very invested in the game on the final sequence, too.
Russell Westbrook led the Lakers with 29 points and six assists off the bench. James finished with 23 points, nine rebounds and six assists, and Dennis Schroder added 19 points, eight rebounds and eight assists.
Morant led Memphis with 22 points and eight rebounds, and Tyus Jones and Brandon Clarke added 20 points off the bench each. Adams finished with 16 points and 17 rebounds.