NBA bans and levies huge fine against Warriors investor who pushed Kyle Lowry during NBA Finals

(CNN)Verbal altercations between NBA fans and players aren’t new. But this case is a little different.

It turns out the “fan” is Golden State Warriors investor Mark Stevens. He won’t be attending any games for a year and he’ll be writing a check for $500,000 to cover a fine announced by the team and the league.
On Thursday, the NBA also announced it was banning Stevens from attending any team activities through the end of next season’s playoffs.
    Earlier an NBA spokesman said team representatives are held to the highest possible standard.
    “The conduct of Golden State Warriors investor Mark Stevens last night was beyond unacceptable and has no place in our league,” NBA spokesman Mike Bass said in a statement.
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    🗣There’s absolutely no place in our BEAUTIFUL game for that AT ALL. There’s so many issues here. When you sit courtside you absolutely know what comes with being on the floor and if you don’t know it’s on the back on the ticket itself that states the guidelines. But he himself being a fan but more importantly PART-OWNER of the Warriors knew exactly what he was doing which was so uncalled for. He knew the rules more than just the average person sitting watching the game courtside so for that Something needs to be done ASAP! A swift action for his actions. Just think to yourself, what if @kyle_lowry7 would have reacted and put his hands back on him. You guys would be going CRAZY!! Calling for him to damn near be put in jail let alone being suspended for the rest of the Finals all because he was protected himself. I’ve been quite throughout the whole NBA playoffs watching every game (haven’t missed one) but after I saw what I saw last night, took time to let it manifest into my thinking 🧢 I couldn’t and wouldn’t be quiet on this! #ProtectThePlayers #PrivilegeAintWelcomeHere

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    Lowry, going after a loose ball, jumped into the stands. Stevens, whom Lowry didn’t land on, shoved him. Lowry called for security, and Stevens was escorted out.
    The NBA said Stevens also directed obscene comments at Lowry, whose team led by 10 points at the time, earlier in the fourth quarter.
    The Warriors released a statement on Stevens earlier Thursday.
    “Mr. Stevens’ behavior last night did not reflect the high standards that we hope to exemplify as an organization,” the statement said. “We’re extremely disappointed in his actions and, along with Mr. Stevens, offer our sincere apology to Kyle Lowry and the Toronto Raptors organization for this unfortunate misconduct. There is no place for such interaction between fans — or anyone — and players at an NBA game.”
    The team said that review of this matter is ongoing.
    Lowry was asked about the incident after the game in which he helped the Raptors to a 2-1 series lead with a 123-109 victory.
    “As for that fan, there’s no place for that,” Lowry said. “He had no reason to touch me. He had no reason to reach over two seats and then say some vulgar language to me. There’s no place for people like that in our league, and hopefully he never comes back to an NBA game.”
    Stevens is listed in the Warriors media guide as one of the organization’s executive board members. It’s not immediately known how much of a stake Stevens has in the team.
    The NBA Players Association will be closely monitoring the Warriors and the league’s investigation into the situation, NBPA executive director Michele Roberts said in a statement.
    “The NBPA has previously expressed its support of a ‘zero-tolerance’ policy with respect to verbal and/or physical assaults perpetrated against players,” Roberts said. “Stevens’ status as a member of the ownership group does not alter that view.”
      Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James weighed in on Thursday, saying that what Stevens did was “so uncalled for.”
      “He knew the rules more than just the average person sitting watching the game courtside so for (that’s) something needs to be done ASAP!” James said in an Instagram post. “A swift action for his actions.”

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