"He's a sick dude," Gilbert said of Barry Gimelstob afterward. "He's a disgusting human being."
"He's a jealous, envious guy," said Barry Gimelstob of Gilbert. "It's high time someone stepped up to this bully."
Tension between the Agassi and Gimelstob camps had been high because of Agassi's assertion that Justin isn't a top-tier player (SI, Aug. 24). Last Thursday, Agassi, a Cup stalwart, ripped the U.S. Tennis Association's placement of this month's semifinals, against Italy, in Milwaukee. Agassi said he had told captain Tom Gullikson that a charity commitment in Las Vegas would prevent him from playing if the semis were not on the West Coast, and he implied that Gullikson was little more than a puppet for the USTA. Of this year's Cup final, Agassi said, "If it was in my backyard, I wouldn't walk out the back door."
When Gilbert walked out of the players' locker room at the Open on Saturday, the elder Gimelstob accused him of using Agassi to open up the captain's job for Gilbert, a charge Gilbert calls ridiculous. "I said, 'Why are you killing Tom Gullikson behind his back?' " Gimelstob said later.
Things heated up, Gilbert said, when Gimelstob, who, like Gilbert, is Jewish, spit on him and said Gilbert gave Jewish coaches a bad name. A guard stepped in. When Gilbert walked outside, he said, Gimelstob was there. "He was at the gate, saying, 'Let's throw down, let's throw down,' " said Gilbert, who declined the invitation.