It's reported that there were three separate incidents where fans made rude, sexist, and racist remarks to the Grizzlies guard's parents in the stands.
What in the world is going on with NBA fans lately? They're known to be fiercely tied to the teams they support, but this week, there have been three separate incidents that have given league officials pause. We previously reported on two: Russell Westbrook getting popcorn dumped on him from the stands as he was being ushered off of the court with an injured ankle, and a fan spitting on Trae Young. It has also been reported that several Utah Jazz fans have been banned from the league following what ESPN dubbed a "verbal altercation" following Wednesday's (May 26) game against the Memphis Grizzlies.
According to reports, Grizzlies guard Ja Morant's parents were the targets of three Jazz fans who made offensive and vulgar remarks toward them during the game. It was also noted that the three fans weren't in a single party; Morant's relatives dealt with three separate incidents.
"I know heckling," Tee Morant told ESPN. "We were doing that the whole game. But that's different than heckling. That's straight-up disrespectful. That was too far out of line. You don't say nothing like that heckling. That's beyond heckling." He explained that one person made sexually explicit comments to his wife, and while Tee was confronting the man, the fan was escorted out by security.
Another person said to the NBA dad, "I'll put a nickel in your back and watch you dance, boy." Surrounding Jazz fans confronted the man and he, too, was shown the exit. A third fan targeted Jamie Morant, Ja Morant's mother, and reportedly said to her, "Shut the f*ck up, b*tch." The Utah Jazz issued a statement regarding the incidents, condemning the behavior of those three individuals.
"The Utah Jazz have zero tolerance for offensive or disruptive behavior," they stated. "An incident occurred last night involving a verbal altercation during Game 2. Arena security staff intervened, and the investigation resulted in the removal and banning of three Jazz fans indefinitely. We apologize to all who were impacted by this unfortunate incident and condemn unacceptable fan behavior."
Check out a few responses from Ja Morant and LeBron James below.