Fan Banned, Westbrook Fined $25K After Altercation
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — In a major move, the Utah Jazz have opted to “permanently ban” a fan from “all arena events” at the Vivint Smart Home Arena as a result of an altercation between him and Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook on Monday night.
The NBA has fined Russell $25,000 dollars.
The Utah Jazz released a statement Tuesday afternoon saying, in part:
“The organization conducted an investigation through video review and eyewitness accounts. The ban is based on excessive and derogatory verbal abuse directed at a player during the game that violated the NBA Code of Conduct. The Utah Jazz will not tolerate fans who act inappropriately. There is no place in our game for personal attacks or disrespect.”
That fan, Shane Keisel, told KSL that he’s the one who deserves an apology. He says he was just doing some innocent heckling when Westbrook turned on him and his wife.
“He can threaten me all he wants. I was the one talking to him. But don’t threaten a woman, she’s 5 feet tall, 110 pounds. She never said a word to him. [This was] her first NBA game ever,” said Keisel.
But Westbrook said after the game that Keisel and his wife made racial remarks to him.
“A young man and his wife in the stands told me to get down on your knees like you used to and to me that’s just completely disrespectful to me,” Westbrook said.
Keisel told KSL that he’s received hundreds of death threats and he said racist tweets that popped up on his twitter page were not his. He says he has not tweeted any racial remarks and has had to shut down his social media pages.
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