BOSTON (CBS) — Jae Crowder admits he was a little too fired up on Tuesday night, when the Celtics forward took to Twitter to voice his displeasure with Boston fans who had cheered for Utah’s Gordon Hayward.
He first discussed his anger with reporters following Boston’s 115-104 win over the Jazz, and then things got a little heated with fans when he took those feelings to social media. At one point, Crowder said he’d be happy to leave town.
Cooler heads have since prevailed, and Crowder said Thursday before practice that he certainly does not want to leave Boston. But he still feels disrespected by the fans who were cheering for the opposition during the pregame introductions, and that will never change.
“I was a little angry after the game, obviously,” Crowder told the large media scrum gathered around him. “I said what I had to say after the game. I probably should have left it right there. I went on Twitter and said what I had to say and that’s one thing I regret, going back-and-forth with fans on Twitter, but that’s how I was feeling at the time.
“Obviously, I don’t want to leave Boston. Obviously, I love it here. Obviously, the fans have treated me great, no doubt about that,” he continued. “I still stand behind what I said about how I felt disrespected when they were cheering for Gordon Hayward. I’ll live with that and stand behind that 100 percent as a man, as a basketball player who puts my time away from my family into this. I stand behind that.”
Crowder, who quickly became a fan favorite in Boston for his hard-working mentality and gritty defense, said he felt the same way when fans have cheered for Kevin Durant and other opposing players in the past.
“I didn’t like that, either,” he said of the Durant chant that filled the TD Garden last season. “I just remember when I got here a couple of years ago and we were however many games under .500, the fans cheered for us. Not one time did they cheer for another player when they came into town. Things have changed since then, I’m aware of that. That’s never happened in an arena that I’ve been in. I’ve never been on the road and got cheered for, or even one of my teammates get cheered for by the opposing team.
“It’s just something different for me that really set me off. I don’t like when they cheer for DeMarcus Cousins, I don’t like when they cheer for Kevin Durant. I don’t think you should do that,” he said. “That’s all I was saying.”
Celtics head coach Brad Stevens and president of basketball ops. Danny Ainge have defended Crowder over the last two days, only saying they wish he didn’t take his frustrations to social media. Both urged fans to focus on Crowder’s efforts on the floor, and not the moment of frustration he displayed off of it.
Crowder made it clear on Thursday that he is thankful for all the support fans have shown him since his arrival in 2013. He would just really appreciate it if all their cheers were reserved for players in a Boston uniform, and not players who may some day wear a Boston uniform.
“I really appreciate everything you all have done for me. You have to understand that was a little heat of the moment with those Tweets. I really apologize for them,” he said. “But I really do hope you guys understand where I’m coming from with the whole cheering for the opposing team.”