Net guard Kyrie Irving was pelted with a water bottle from the stands at TD Garden in Boston after Brooklyn’s playoff win against the Celtics on Sunday night.
YES Network captured the moment: Irving was leaving the field with teammates when the bottle landed in front of him.
MORE: Why did Kyrie Irving quit the Celtics?
“We keep saying things like ‘we are human, we are human’ but we are not treated as if we have rights when we are out there sometimes and people feel entitled to do such things.” Irving told reporters on his post-game zoom call.
“We keep saying ‘we are human, we are human’ but we are not treated like we have rights when we are out there and people feel entitled to do such things” – Kyrie Irving pic. twitter. com / LbSRU6zkHB
– Network videos (@SNYNets) May 31, 2021
A later video (screenshot below) showed a Celtics fan being led out of the arena in handcuffs. It is not yet clear whether this person threw the bottle.
TD Garden announced that Boston police had arrested a “guest” at the arena for “throwing an object”. It is also said that the person is subject to “a lifetime ban” from the building.
Here’s a statement from TD Garden about the incident where a fan pelted Kyrie Irving with a water bottle. pic.twitter.com/j2aYRVNwr1
– Adam Himmelsbach (@AdamHimmelsbach), May 31, 2021
Celtics fans are furious with Irving, who, among other things, left the 2019 team after saying the year before that he would sign with Boston again. Irving stirred the pot earlier this week by expressing his hope that the Boston crowd would stick to basketball and not show “subtle racism” for games 3 and 4 of the Nets-Celts series.
On Sunday, Irving went to center court after the Nets defeated the Celtics 141-126 in Game 4, then stomped on Boston’s logo. Brooklyn took the lead with the win 3-1 in the best-of-seven series. Game 5 will be in Brooklyn on Tuesday.
The Sunday incident is the latest example of fans crossing the lines between players and their families during this year’s NBA playoffs:
– A 76ers fan in Philadelphia threw popcorn at the Wizards’ Russell Westbrook.
– A Knicks fan in New York spat on Hawk’s guard Trae Young.
– Jazz fans in Salt Lake City made racist and vulgar comments about the family of the Grizzlies guard Ja Morant. Morant’s father said fans also made racist comments about Memphis ‘Dillon Brooks’ family.
Each of these fans was identified and then banned from their respective arenas.
Irving reminded reporters that the fan misconduct problem has existed for many years.
“Lots of older players have been through it, and every great person, great entertainer and performer understands that when you achieve something greater than yourself, you have to have a lot of adversity, hostility and just figure out how to deal with it,” said he.