Warriors' O'Neal addresses beef with Clippers' Griffin

Warriors' O'Neal addresses beef with Clippers' Griffin
March 14, 2014, 1:15 pm
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It was a conversation that needed to be had.
Jermaine O'Neal

History: Blake Griffin and Jermaine O'Neal argue after a foul call in April 2013, when O'Neal played for Phoenix. (USATSI)

OAKLAND -- Two days after his postgame confrontation with Blake Griffin in a hallway at Staples Center, Warriors center Jermaine O'Neal explained that he was attempting to clear a personal dispute with the Clippers star.

"It was some things that were said," O'Neal said after the team's Friday morning shootaround, "and in this league you want to put clearance to it. And we did. After the game, it felt like it was appropriate to address.

"The biggest thing that's not talked about is that we shook hands afterward. Everybody's going to make a big issue of the conversation that started. But what makes you a man is your ability to shake hands and (say), 'I see your view, you see my view, good luck the rest of the season and hopefully we'll see you guys in the playoffs.'"

O'Neal and Griffin tangled in the fourth quarter of the Warriors' 111-98 loss Wednesday at Los Angeles, with O'Neal being whistled for a technical foul. O'Neal made several attempts to confront Griffin at that time but was steered away by teammates and coaches.

It was after the game, though, that O'Neal approached Griffin near the Clippers locker room and words, including expletives, were exchanged.

[RELATED: Warriors' O'Neal confronts Clippers' Griffin]

Though O'Neal would not be specific about what Griffin said or did, he indicated Griffin's actions have no place on the basketball floor.

"It's understood what the line is," O'Neal said. "We're paid to be basketball players and to play the game the right way and do things the right way. And when you cross the line in saying things and doing things, you address it and you move on. We've moved on."

O'Neal, in his 18th season, acknowledged discussing the matter with the NBA on Thursday. The league continues to investigate. Describing his meeting with Griffin as "a conversation that needed to be had," O'Neal expressed no regret.

"Sometimes things happen during games or things are said during games that shouldn't necessarily be said or done," he said. "But then as men, you talk about it. You shake on it and move on. I don't have any animosity toward him, hopefully he doesn't have any animosity toward me and hopefully that's it.''

Both players have a history of being involved in scuffles, though Griffin's list of incidents is fairly dense for a fourth-year player. Earlier this season, Warriors Andrew Bogut and Draymond Green were involved in altercations with Griffin.