The last thing the fiery rivalry between the Thunder and Lakers needed was more gasoline.
It got some anyway Sunday.
Thunder guard Russell Westbrook and Lakers guard Kobe Bryant got into a brief shoving match with 8:05 remaining in the third quarter of L.A.'s 105-96 win at Staples Center. The two exchanged words, and Bryant was hit with a technical foul but both were allowed to remain in the game.
“He pushed me. That's what happened,” Westbrook said of Bryant. “I just got pushed. I don't mind talking, but I don't like nobody putting their hands on me.”
Bryant was not asked about the brief dust-up.
Westbrook, who struggled through a 6-for-22 shooting night, had just missed his 11th shot in 12 attempts and was running back on defense attempting to steal the ball from behind as Bryant attacked the basket. Westbrook was whistled for a foul and appeared to make contact with Bryant's leg. Bryant then pushed Westbrook in the back at the end of the play. Westbrook immediately turned and shoved Bryant right back.
The two were then separated and play resumed.
IBAKA TAKES A HARD FALL
With 1.9 seconds remaining in the first quarter, Thunder forward Serge Ibaka took a hard spill when he bit on a pump fake by Lakers forward Antawn Jamison.
Ibaka was undercut as Jamison attempted a shot while being fouled by Ibaka, and Ibaka landed hard on his right side in front of the Lakers' bench.
After immediately being subbed out of the game, Ibaka retuned with 5:51 left in the second quarter and finished the game.
Ibaka scored 10 points on 5-for-10 shooting with six rebounds and four blocked shots in 35 minutes.