In a sign that the Lakers’ team unity goes beyond sharing the ball and accepting roles, forward Shawne Williams believed he made a bold statement when he aggressively confronted Kings center DeMarcus Cousins after he bumped Lakers guard Jordan Farmar to the floor.
“Everybody in this locker room is part of a team,” Williams said following the Lakers’ 100-86 win Sunday over the Sacramento Kings at Staples Center. “We’re family. Anybody who tries to mess with our family or do a dirty play, I’m going to stand up for them on the court.”
Williams believed Cousins tried to do that.
After bumping Farmar to the ground, the Lakers guard appeared agitated by the contact. But Cousins offered to pick him up. Before that happened, Williams intervened and signaled to back away. Tensions increased, and both Williams and Cousins received technical fouls with 5:42 left in the game.
“I just felt like he was pushing him down,” Williams said. “I felt like it was a dirty play because he was already falling. I just stood up for him.”
What did Williams say?
“I told him he needed to knock it off,” Williams said. “He told me he was trying to help him up. I said that was BS. That was it.”
Regardless of whether the Lakers’ suspicious toward Cousins were warranted, the sequence appeared to unite the team. The Lakers, led by Williams, helped Farmar up and expressed choice words for the Kings center.
“I don’t think he went overboard,” Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said of Williams. “I just think he was trying to stick up for Jordan. Maybe they liked each other when they played together in New Jersey. Shawne is a standup guy.”
“If I’m on the bench, I can’t do nothing. I cannot cross the line,” Williams said. “At the end of the day, we have to be smart. I’m not trying to get ejected or do anything dumb. I just have to let them know that at the end of the day we can’t stand for that.”
Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org