Following the Oklahoma City Thunder’s 107-95 win over the Chicago Bulls on Thursday night, Joakim Noah wandered his way into the home team’s locker room. Noah was visiting with former Bulls teammate Thabo Sefolosha, and Thunder big man Kendrick Perkins enough of a problem with it to voice his displeasure.
Sefolosha had apparently gone over to the visitors locker room to chat with his former team and Noah followed him back to the Thunder locker room. According to Anthony Slater of The Oklahoman, Perkins spotted Noah and the following exchange took place:
Perkins: They just let anybody in the locker room?
Noah: C,mon man.
Perkins: I’m just asking though.
Noah: C’mon man.
Perkins: Just let anybody in the locker room now?
Noah: You want me to wait outside?
Perkins: I’m just saying though.
Noah: If you want me to wait outside, I’ll wait outside.
Perkins: Get your ass up outta here.
Team officials and security then quickly moved in to make sure there wasn’t an issue. Once outside the locker room, Noah and Perkins reportedly exchanged a few more words before heading their separate ways. Royce Young of DailyThunder.com added that most of the Thunder players sided with Perkins and seemed irritated that Sefolosha brought Noah into the locker room.
It is also worth noting that Perk already has some sort of existing issue with Noah. He doesn’t seem to like him. Just before the exchange took place, Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman was chatting with Perkins.
Perk and Noah (surprisingly) didn’t get into any beef tonight. It was Perk and Carlos Boozer. Still, Perk was disgusted by Noah’s 23-point, 10-rebound, three-assist night. Didn’t like that the big fella went off on the Thunder like that, even though the Bulls took the ‘L.’ Not 20 seconds after Perk expressed his frustration, I spotted Noah. Perk’s back was to the entrance. I said, ‘Speak of the Devil.’ Perk turned, looked up and went ape s***. I had no idea it would be such a touchy sighting.”
Mayberry also said he spoke with Russell Westbrook, who supported Perkins and said entering an opponent’s locker room is a matter of respect. Westbrook said he would not allow close friend Kevin Love to enter Oklahoma City’s locker room when the Minnesota Timberwolves are in town.
Clearly, the Thunder have some sort of unwritten rule in place about opposing players coming into their locker room. Some teams are fine with it, some aren’t. The fact that bad blood already exists between Perkins and Noah probably didn’t help.Google+