BOSTON -- In a series in which their tempers regularly flared, Boston Celtics guard Terry Rozier and Milwaukee Bucks guard Eric Bledsoe shared an embrace following Boston's Game 7 victory Saturday night and downplayed any animosity lingering from the first-round matchup.
"You have two guys that want to win, two chippy guys, two short point guards," said Rozier, who scored 26 points on 10-of-16 shooting, including five 3-pointers, a career high in the playoffs.
"If it takes for us to go back and forth, jaw back and forth, battle, push each other, that's part of the game. We talked after the game."
After Game 1 of the series, Rozier inadvertently referred to Bledsoe as "Drew," as in the former New England Patriots quarterback. Bledsoe responded by repeatedly suggesting in media sessions with reporters that he didn't know Rozier's name.
During Game 7, Boston fans repeatedly chanted, "Who is Bledsoe?" even as Bledsoe had one of his best games of the series, putting up 23 points on 9-of-12 shooting.
The two also had a brief dust-up in Game 5 in which Bledsoe was called for a flagrant foul for shoving Rozier in the chest and Rozier got a technical for retaliating.
"I mean, it's the playoffs," Bledsoe said after Saturday's game. "What, you expect us to be out there shaking hands, giving out hugs the whole time? S--- ain't gonna happen. He had a helluva series, man. I've got to take my hat off to him."
In the fourth quarter of Game 7, the Celtics aired a video that featured Drew Bledsoe. Said the former quarterback, "Hey, Boston, it's the original Bledsoe," and he then implored the crowd to get loud.
Rozier said he liked the video.
"Man, that was special," Rozier said. "I don't know who thought of that, but that was nice. For real, I liked that."
Celtics coach Brad Stevens praised Rozier for keeping his cool throughout the series despite all the flare-ups with Bledsoe.
"I thought Terry maintained an even keel all the way through," Stevens said. "It is not easy when you are playing a seven-game series, you see the same guys over and over. Playing physical players, he did a great job of maintaining his poise and playing the right way."