What Must Change Between NBA Player And Fan Interaction?

NBA Player

What Must Change Between NBA Player And Fan Interaction? | Sports Takes & News | TooAthletic.com

The NBA Playoffs are making headlines for all the wrong reasons as the first round got underway. From falling popcorn to being hit by spit, players are no longer safe on or near the court anymore with fans using their tickets to act stupid. The biggest question is: When did being an NBA player become so dangerous? With, perhaps the follow-up being, who is to blame and how can it be fixed? 

Basketball fans in New York and Philadelphia had a bad night Wednesday as one person dropped a bucket of popcorn on Russell Westbrook as he was leaving the court to have an injury looked at, while a fan at Madison Square Garden felt it was OK to spit on Atlanta’s Trae Young during an inbounds play. Both fans as of Thursday night have been banned from attending any future games with the local authorities being informed of their transgression. 

First, let me say to people like LeBron James, who did a great job deflecting attention away from his teammate Anthony Davis, whose groin kick Tuesday night was worse than anything that happened to Westbrook or Young, to call for the name or video of what these fans did is pointless and grandstanding. While also admitting there is very small humorous aspect to these stories, NBA players are right to be concerned about their safety from fans like those that committed these acts on Wednesday. However, I will remind them that there would be a price to pay if they wish to keep those few fans away from the court to increase their safety … they would need to take a reduction in pay.

The NBA has long profited by being able to have fans sit on or near the same court that some of the world’s greatest athletes compete on. Those courtside seats made famous by Spike Lee and Jack Nicholson are some of the most expensive in all of sports, but have long given fans a feeling that they were one bounce pass away from being in the game. 

Once a player shows that they will react to what fans do, they are opening the door to having almost anything said and a lot of things shouted their way during a game. Which is something some stars can block out (see Tim Duncan) while other players react to and encourage future acts like we saw this week (see Russell Westbrook).

There will always be fans close enough to throw popcorn or spit on NBA players for as long the teams sell four-figure tickets and players want their huge contracts. If the NBA players want to be safer, they need to give back the biggest perk of their jobs, money; otherwise they can’t complain about who gets into the arena to watch them, because everyone’s cash is green, even the people who may do them harm. 

 


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What Must Change Between NBA Player And Fan Interaction? | TooAthletic.com

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