Williams: Celtics, Knicks don't like each other

Williams: Celtics, Knicks don't like each other
May 3, 2013, 12:00 pm
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Jordan Crawford started in the backcourt with Avery Bradley against the Jazz Wednesday night.

(AP Photo)

WALTHAM, Mass. — All the mutual respect talk and pleasantries we saw exchanged between the Celtics and the Knicks at the start of their playoff series are now a thing of the past. The flair-up between a few Knicks and Celtics players at the end of the C's Game 5 win, was just another example of how this series has become testy.
 
"At this point, I don't think either team likes each other," said Celtics guard Terrence Williams. "We're all for our guys, they're for their guys."
 
And that solidarity, in Williams' eyes at least, went a bit too far when a number of Knicks players decided to wear all black to Game 5 because they thought it would be a funeral marking the end the C's season.
 
Instead, the Celtics came away with a 92-86 victory which forced a Game 6 matchup tonight in Boston.
 
"When people wear all black and saying it's a funeral, a lot of us have people that died in our own personal lives," Williams said. "That's not really something that's funny; that's not really nothing to play with. If you say you're going to end the series in New York . . . but not a funeral."
 
And then there was the dust-up between Celtics guard Jordan Crawford and Knicks all-star Carmelo Anthony at the end of the game. Williams was among the Boston players in the middle of the incident who was doing his part to keep players from both teams separated.
 
Although the incident happened just two days ago, Williams says he has "put it out of his mind" and doesn't remember what happened (wink-wink).
 
"I was trying to be the peacemaker," said Williams who did remember enough of the incident to remember the role he played in it. "I didn't want that to escalate."
 
While that situation itself may be diffused, the same can not be said for what will be an emotionally-charged game for both teams.
 
New York will try to send the C's home for good for the third straight time, while the Celtics will seek to continue doing the seemingly unthinkable, which is to rally back -- and potentially win -- a playoff series after falling behind 3-0.
 
As important as it will be for the Celtics to get clutch plays from just about every player who suits up for them, staying cool under the pressure will be just as vital to any success Boston will have tonight.
 
"The Knicks are a good team," Williams said. "They switch almost everything so it's kind of hard to go by your man, but you have to stay composed, don't let them speed you up."
 
Composure is indeed important, especially in the playoffs pitting two longstanding rivals who each will surely try to ratchet up their intensity and physical play.
 
"I always wanted to say this: That's playoff basketball," Williams said. "Before I got here, I heard these two teams were rivals. You don't expect nothing less. At the end of the day, it's basketball. Everything should be left on the court. Nothing should be escalated off the court like last game, end of the game. But it's playoff basketball."