Utah Jazz are setting a precedent that racist are not welcome in their arena.
Two days after issuing a permanent ban to fan Shane Keisel for his interaction with Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook, the Utah Jazz banned another fan for a previous incident involving Westbrook back during the 2017-2018 playoffs.
Westbrook told reporters that he felt Keisel made racist comments toward him:
In that first round series, a fan was seen calling Westbrook “boy” prior to Game 4 at Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City on April 23:
The Jazz conducted an investigation and tracked down the fan in the video and he was banned for “degrading and offensive conduct” against Westbrook, according to Eric Woodyard of the Deseret News.
There was also another incident involving Jazz fans after the team eliminated OKC last season as well:
The news on Jazz fans has gotten so bad that owner Gail Miller had to come out and address the crowd:
“I am extremely disappointed that one of our quote ‘fans’ conducted himself in such a way as to offend not only a guest in our arena, but also me personally, my family, our organization, the community, our players and you, as the best fans in the NBA.
“This should never happen. We are not a racist community. We believe in treating people with courtesy and respect as human beings. From time to time, individual fans exhibit poor behavior and forget their manners and disrespect players on other teams. When that happens, I want you to jump up and shout ‘stop.’ We have a code of conduct in this arena. It will be strictly enforced.”
The Jazz and Thunder are not scheduled to face each other again during the regular season, but since both of the teams are currently 4th and 5th in the West, they are well in line to face each other in the playoffs for the 2nd-straight year.
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