Fooch's Update: Based on more circulating info, it sounds like Sherman thinks Crabtree was talking a bunch of smack to him at this charity event. It's possible the Seattle Times mis-interpreted this as a "fight", but who really knows.
Last night, Richard Sherman went full-on WWE-style heel with his post-game interview. After tipping a potential game-winning touchdown away from Michael Crabtree, Richard Sherman ranted and raved about how Crabtree was a sorry receiver, and that nobody should ever talk about him. Naturally, Twitter (and the comments here) exploded in a cacophony of anger.
Initially, I figured Sherman's angry comments were due to Michael Crabtree's comments earlier this week. He was asked if Richard Sherman was the best cornerback in the game. Initially Crabtree said no, but he followed it up by saying he doesn't know about best corners in the game, but rather knows about teams as a whole.
It turns out, there may be more to the story. Apparently, Sherman is pissed about something last summer that happened between the two of them. According to Richard Sherman's brother, something went down at a Larry Fitzgerald charity event:
Sherman has been upset with Crabtree since last summer. Both attended Arizona star receiver Larry Fitzgerald's charity event. While there, Sherman went to shake Crabtree's hand, and Crabtree tried to start a fight, according to Sherman's older brother, Branton.
"I'm going to make a play and embarrass him," Richard Sherman vowed that day.
I could see Richard Sherman carrying a grudge over something, but without any more details, consider me a little skeptical about there being nothing else to this story. It very well could be entirely on Crabtree for this, but given Crabtree's general shyness, I just find it hard to believe Sherman wanted to shake his hand, and Crabtree simply tried to start a fight. I wasn't there, you weren't there, the Internet wasn't there, so we're probably never going to know with certainty.
Whatever the case, I would like to clarify one thing. Richard Sherman is a jerk, and an ass, but let's hold off on the "thug" talk. Even if this supposed fight hadn't happened, would anybody really have been surprised if Sherman had gone off in the interview? He's a mouthy, cocky guy on the field, and in the heat of the moment, it's not at all surprising to see him go off like that. It doesn't justify it, but at this point, the best way to shut him up is to win the game. The 49ers didn't do that, he gets to go off, that's life.
For now though, it's safe to say that next season is going to be even more intense between these two teams. I'm very curious to see what happens on the field between Crabtree and Sherman next season.