Utah Jazz proprietor Gail Miller addressed the gang earlier than Thursday’s sport to underscore the workforce’s willingness to implement the NBA’s Code of Conduct following Monday’s incident involving Russell Westbrook and a fan who crossed the road.
Miller spoke for about three-and-a-half minutes earlier than the Jazz confronted the Minnesota Timberwolves and requested followers to look out for potential repeats of the shouting match that led Utah to subject Shane Keisel a lifetime ban.
“I’m extraordinarily disillusioned that one in every of our quote ‘followers’ performed himself in such a approach as to offend not solely a visitor in our enviornment, but in addition me personally, my household, our group, the group, our gamers and also you, as one of the best followers within the NBA,” Miller stated.
“This could by no means occur,” she stated. “We’re not a racist group. We consider in treating folks civilly and respect as human beings. Once in a while, particular person followers exhibit poor habits and overlook their manners and disrespect gamers on different groups. When that occurs, I need you to leap up and shout ‘cease.’ We now have a code of conduct on this enviornment. It will likely be strictly enforced.”
Video of Westbrook saying, “I am going to f— you up” to Keisel whereas standing close to the tip of the Thunder bench throughout the second quarter went viral after being posted on Twitter. Westbrook stated after the sport that it was an emotional response to Keisel telling him, “Get in your knees such as you’re used to,” a remark Westbrook thought of “utterly disrespectful” and “racial.”
Jazz proprietor Gail Miller requested followers to point out respect to all groups. Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports activities
The Jazz completely banned the fan from their video games, whereas the NBA fined Westbrook $25,000.
“Different groups usually are not our enemies. They’re our competitors,” Miller stated. “Competitors is an efficient factor. It permits gamers to showcase their abilities and it permits followers to encourage, respect, cheer for and luxuriate in those that share their abilities with us.”
Earlier within the day, Miller despatched an electronic mail to followers on the workforce’s mailing record with directions to ship a textual content message to the sector if they need to see anybody violating the conduct code.
“We don’t allow hate speech, racism, sexism or homophobia,” the e-mail stated. “We additionally don’t enable disruptive habits, together with bullying, foul or abusive language, or obscene gestures. Violators could also be topic to ejection and different penalties, together with a lifetime ban.”
One other electronic mail to season-ticket holders stated the workforce can revoke these tickets no matter who’s sitting in these seats for a specific sport.