Monta Ellis, Larry Sanders reportedly had to be separated after Game 3 loss

Mike McGinnis

The two Milwaukee starters nearly came to blows in the locker room after Sanders accused unnamed teammates of playing selfishly.

While the Milwaukee Bucks made the playoffs this year for only the second time in seven seasons, discontent in their locker room had reached a boiling point by the end of their first-round series with the Miami Heat.

Larry Sanders and Monta Ellis had to be separated following their Game 3 loss, according to a report from Ken Berger of CBS Sports:

Sanders vented in the locker room and said in a fiery speech, "We need to start playing together as a team and stop worrying about next year. We need to stop being selfish and start worrying about right now."

Ellis "took umbrage," according to another person with knowledge of the situation. Ellis approached Sanders and squared off with him, sources said. A teammate got between the two players and separated them before the conflict became physical.

Both Ellis and Brandon Jennings are set to enter free agency this summer, and rumors about both players' future have been circling for most of the season.

Since the two diminutive guards tend to dominate the ball, that can lead to accusations of selfishness when they take difficult shots. Their tendency to force the action has been an issue for both their entire career.

It's unclear whether ill will still exists between Ellis and Sanders, two fiery players known to play with their hearts on their sleeves, but it's an indication of the tricky dynamic facing the Bucks' front office as they look for a new coach and try to keep the franchise moving in the right direction.

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