If what Washington fans did to Kelly Olynyk on Sunday night in Game 4 was any indication, Kelly Oubre, Jr. is in for a heck of a time on Wednesday night in Boston when the 2-2 series between the Wizards and Celtics tilts north.
Olynyk was booed every time he touched the ball, stemming from the Game 3 incident where Oubre shoved him to the ground after an illegal screen and earned an ejection. Oubre was suspended for Game 4, but still had a presence despite NBA rules banning him from attending in-person. Fans jeered Olynyk mercilessly and then chanted Oubre's name to mock Olynyk after he was called for a foul.
Washington fans are passionate and that showed, but Boston fans can be ruthless. Deriding their opponents is a perfected pastime.
Oubre knows that and he's ready for whatever.
"It's fun, man. In some weird way it lets me know that I'm alive. I'm here," Oubre told CSN. "If a whole stadium full of people are chanting my name, that's a blessing. I see what we did to Kelly Olynyk, so I'm not going to be surprised by anything."
Oubre's coach Scott Brooks and Wizards forward Markieff Morris had some simple advice for the second-year forward. Maybe Oubre can stop by a CVS on the way to Boston.
"Oh jeez. Bring some ear plugs," he quipped. "They're definitely gonna let him have it."
"Man, I feel like we all should bring ear plugs," Morris said. "But if you ain't booing then you ain't doing something right, then. That's how I look at it."
Both Brooks and Oubre noted how the latter has played in plenty of raucous enviroments in his time. Oubre played college ball at Kansas and has two NBA seasons under his belt.
"I've played in all the loudest arenas and against a lot of the best fans," Oubre said. "I just have to stay focused and lock in."
Usually it's just loudmouths with wicked accents screaming from the stands in Boston, but as the incident involving Adam Jones of the Orioles hearing racial taunts during a game against the Red Sox showed, there is a line that can be crossed. There have been times where Boston fans have asked Philly fans to hold their proverbial beer.
John Wall, for one, says that hasn't been an issue at TD Garden in his experience.
"Not me," he said. "I've never heard anything disrespectful... He's going to get the same amount of boos as me, but probably a little louder."
Oubre will have an interesting experience on Wednesday, no question about it. But he feels ready for the challenge.
"It's not going to bother me," he said.