Grizz, ex-NFL star Sharpe separated after dispute

by Gordon Dixon - Referees and security intervened to settle a confrontation between several Grizzlies players and former NFL star Shannon Sharpe just before halftime of Thursday's game between Memphis and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Grizzlies get heated with ex-NFL star Shannon Sharpe before half 12:06 AM ET Dave McMenaminESPN Staff Writer Close Lakers and NBA reporter for ESPN. Covered the Lakers and NBA for ESPNLosAngeles.com from 2009-14, the Cavaliers from 2014-18 for ESPN.com and the NBA for NBA.com from 2005-09. LOS ANGELES -- Tempers flared just after the second-quarter buzzer sounded in Friday night's game between the Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Lakers when several members of the Grizzlies engaged in a shouting match with NFL Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe, who was seated near the court. Referees and security intervened to settle the confrontation as several Grizzlies players -- including Dillon Brooks , Steven Adams , Ja Morant and Morant's father, Tee Morant -- gathered on the sideline opposite their bench at Crypto.com Arena to approach Sharpe. Sharpe, who currently works as a commentator for FOX Sports, was escorted by security through the tunnel to a back hallway of the arena where he stayed for halftime before returning to his seat for the third quarter. Part of Sharpe's persona on his show, "Undisputed," is celebrating his unabashed fandom of Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James opposite his co-host, Skip Bayless, a notorious James critic. Sharpe has appeared on the show wearing a goat mask and James' jersey, suggesting that James is the greatest player of all time, or G.O.A.T., of the NBA. Sharpe granted ESPN a brief interview on his walk back to his seat before the second half started. "They didn't want this smoke, Dave," Sharpe said. "They do all that talking and jockeying and I ain't about that jockeying. It started with Dillon Brooks. I said he was too small to guard LeBron. He said, 'F---' me. I said, 'F---' you back. He started to come at me and I said, 'You don't want these problems.' And then Ja came out of nowhere talking. He definitely didn't want these problems. Then the dad came and he obviously didn't want no problems. "But I wanted anything they had. Don't let these fools fool you now." The Grizzlies, who came into the night riding an 11-game winning streak, led the Lakers 53-49 at the half.