Crawford, who didn't play a single second in the game, apparently felt the need to jaw at Felton, whose 21-point, six-rebound performance was just about all that stood between the Knicks and a blowout loss.
Terrence Williams corralled Felton as a handful of Celtics ushered Crawford off to the locker room before the situation escalated. Also integral in defusing the tension was Doc Rivers, who exercised some paternal authority to clear the floor:
Good amount of jawing going on right now between Knicks and Celtics players. Doc Rivers steps in with a Dad point to the locker room.— Jimmy Spencer (@JimmySpencerNBA) May 2, 2013
Given the amateurish behavior from the Knicks, many of whom wore black to the game to celebrate what they believed would be the Celtics' funeral, it's not all that surprising that the Celtics were a little salty after their big win:
Totally agree with Steve Kerr. Way too much unprofessionalism and nonsense from the Knicks, and this is the result.— Brett Pollakoff (@BrettEP) May 2, 2013
Of course, for those like CSN Washington's J. Michael, who spent time with Crawford in the past, the volatile guard's unnecessary postgame activity might not have been all that strange:
The Celtics won their Game 5 duel by observing a disciplined defensive scheme, playing with composure and not letting their own egos get in the way of a true team effort. And frankly, the Knicks lost largely because they failed to do the same.
If New York can't get its focus back where it needs it to be—on playing unselfish, intelligent basketball—the Celtics could very well threaten to become the first NBA team to ever overcome a 3-0 playoff deficit.
At the same time, Boston doesn't need these kinds of extracurriculars from its bench, either. And it especially doesn't need them from players who aren't contributing on the court. In all, the postgame dust-up was a somewhat predictable manifestation of frustration and bad blood between a pair of old rivals.
But it was also the result of Crawford's knuckle-headed immaturity.
On the bright side, the incident at least provided the opportunity to observe the personal growth of one of the league's most reputable hotheads:
Rasheed really has gotten old. He kept walking, hardly giving a glance to mouthy skirmish between Melo/Felton & couple Celtics— Peter Vecsey (@PeterVecsey1) May 2, 2013
So at least it wasn't a total loss.