You might not remember the name Shane Keisel, but you do remember him for what happened to him after he received a lifetime ban from all Vivant Smart Home Arena events in 2018.
Keisel received the lifetime ban after video circulated of Westbrook shouting at Keisel and his girlfriend Jennifer Huff, with the then-Thunder guard accusing Keisel of shouting racist comments towards him during the game, with Keisel telling Westbrook to “get down on your knees like you used to.”
“I promise you,” Westbrook yelled at Keisel. “You think I’m playing? I swear to God. I swear to God. I’ll f–k you up. You and your wife. I’ll f–k you up.”
Shane Keisel has decided to fight back and file a lawsuit against the Utah Jazz and Russell Westbrook, claiming he was wrongly accused of shouting racist and derogatory terms against the current Rockets player.
“Mr. Keisel’s heckling was of the same kind and caliber as that of the other audience members in the section,” the lawsuit claims.
Keisel claims he only told Westbrook, “wrap his knees to be better able to play later on in the game.”
He is seeking $68 million in damages, demanding a public apology, while his girlfriend is seeking $32 million in damages — bringing the grand total to $100 million, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.
Keisel said both he and his family have been harassed in the wake of the incident, which has caused him to install new locks and security cameras at his home.
“In public, people have stopped, point out, and taken photographs of Mr. Keisel and his family,” the lawsuit states, via the Salt Lake Tribune, “causing Mr. Keisel to avoid going out in public except when necessary.”
The Jazz issued a lifetime ban the day after the game after “an investigation through video review and eyewitness accounts,” and stood by that ban on Monday.
“We believe there is no legal or factual basis for these claims against the Utah Jazz,” the team said in a statement, via Andy Larsen of the Salt Lake Tribune. “The organization investigated the underlying incident and acted in an appropriate and responsible manner. We intend to vigorously defend the lawsuit.”