The Utah Jazz aren’t messing around when it comes to controlling the behavior of their fans.
According to a report from the Deseret News, the Jazz have banned a second fan for “degrading and offensive” language directed at Oklahoma City Thunder All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook that occurred prior to a 2018 playoff game in Utah. This second ban comes on the heels of the permanent ban of the fan that inappropriately heckled Westbrook during the matchup between the Thunder and Jazz on Monday night.
From the Deseret News:
“On Friday morning, a source informed the Deseret News that the Jazz have also permanently banned a second fan for degrading and offensive conduct against Westbrook that took place during the 2018 postseason.
‘The Jazz aren’t taking these matters lightly,’ the source said.
The source did not name the fan, but said the organization conducted an investigation to track him down from the previously leaked video… Members of the team met after Monday’s fan incident to discuss the issue privately while all the details were being gathered to recognize the severity of the problem.”
The incident occurred before Game 4 of the first round matchup between the Thunder and Jazz, when a Utah fan referred to Westbrook as “boy.” Westbrook warned the fan not to call him “boy,” and then flagged down security when the fan didn’t listen.
You can see footage of the incident below:
It is clear that the Jazz, back in action on Saturday against the Nets (9 p.m. ET — watch on fuboTV with the NBA League Pass extension), as an organization don’t want the actions of a few to sully their reputation, as well as that of the entire city of Utah. On Thursday night, prior to the team’s game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, Jazz owner Gail Miller and expressed disappointment in the way the banned “fan” acted, and pledged to strictly enforce the league’s code of conduct moving forward.
“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,” Miller said. “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.”
By handing out a pair of bans, the Jazz have sent a clear message that any behavior that falls outside of the code of conduct won’t be tolerated moving forward.