Former Boston Celtics point guards Rajon Rondo and Isaiah Thomas got into a scuffle in New Orleans Wednesday night and couldn’t avoid being ejected from their game against each other.

Isaiah Thomas, Rajon Rondo ejections news

The Pelicans’ Rondo and the Los Angeles Lakers’ Thomas were tossed in the final seconds of the first quarter of New Orleans’ 139-117 victory after repeated altercations. It all began when Rondo caught Thomas with a forearm to the face near the end of the first period. Rondo drew a flagrant foul, and angry verbal jabs between him and Thomas continued until officials decided they had seen enough.

“For whatever reason, he’s an upset guy about me,” Thomas told reporters after the game. “I don’t know what it is, but it’s fine. He kept bringing the tribute up, when I was the one that shut the tribute down. I’m far past that. I’m on the Lakers trying to figure out how to help this team win.”


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Thomas — who just joined the Lakers last week in a deadline-day trade with Cleveland — also claimed Rondo struck him in the face three times and said he simply retaliated in self-defense. The 29-year-old All-Star added he believed his ejection was unfair and said that shortly before he was thrown out on Thursday, Rondo brought up the tribute video the Celtics recently made for him.

“At some point, as a human, if no one is going to protect me, I got to protect myself,” said Thomas. “That is when I spoke up and got upset. I hope the NBA figures something out with that, because it was wrong for me to be ejected.”

Though both point guards played for the Celtics, they were never teammates in Boston. Thomas played for the team from 2015-2017, while Rondo played from 2006-2014.

Former Celtics forward Paul Pierce’s No. 34 jersey was retired at TD Garden on Sunday. Thomas’ tribute video was held that same night, and Rondo reportedly questioned what Thomas had accomplished to deserve the homage.

“What has he done?” asked Rondo. When told that Thomas led the the Celtics to the Eastern Conference Finals last year, Rondo allegedly added, “Oh, that’s what we celebrate around here?”

Clearly, the feud between these two veteran players is not over yet. Thomas’s younger sister died at age 22 in a fatal car crash in April 2017, just as the NBA playoffs were beginning.

The Pelicans (31-26) are eighth in the Western Conference, while the Lakers (23-33) are 11th.

WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 07: Isaiah Thomas #4 of the Boston Celtics reacts after a call in the second half against the Washington Wizards in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Semifinals at Verizon Center on May 7, 2017 in Washington, DC.

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