The Electric Commentary

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Antonio Davis

As luck would have it, I was in attendance last night at the United Center when Antonio Davis rushed into the stands to protect his wife.

Believe it or not, this is the second time that I've been at a game where a player was ejected for leaving the courtside area. The first was Derrick Coleman, who left the court during a break at a Bucks playoff game and never came back. He didn't go to the locker room, he was just out wandering around.

Unfortunately, I was about 3.5 miles away from the action, and I was more concerned with the prospect of the Bulls scoring over 100 points so that I could get a free Big Mac, so I didn't notice much. I'm pretty sure that this is the general consensus of the fans in attendance. Unless you were in the vicinity it just wasn't a big deal. (They had the Kiss Kam going at the time. Always a good distraction. Especially when they focus on two people who are clearly not an item and they are forced to make a snap decision.) Davis didn't make a crazy dash into the stands like Artest, he just waited for a break, and calmly went to check on his wife.

Should he be suspended? I would say no, as I don't believe that there was any chance of a riot given how he left the court. I'm actually shocked that the media is making such a big deal about this. If you were there it was boring.

It was a good game though, as Ben Gordon won it with a last second jumper in overtime.

Plus, free Big Macs.


  • I'm not shocked at the media making an issue of it and I do think he should be suspended. (But only for one game.) My feeling is, even though he was trying to settle things down, it's just not worth the risk that some guy in the stands thinks he's about to get pummeled by an NBA player, starts running off, runs over a little kid, then the little kid's dad takes a swing at the player, etc. I just think the NBA has to be really cautious about these things. Even though I would've done the same thing if I thought my wife was in danger.

    By Blogger MDS, at 10:05 AM  

  • Last night on the Score, some caller claimed to be sitting a couple of rows from Kendra Davis and said that she was the one who was being beligerent to a fan who was heckling Antonio.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:25 AM  

  • I don't really think it matters who was being beligerant. Davis isn't some hothead, I'm sure that whatever he saw was alarming.

    I could see a one-game suspension as being palatable, it's just that most of the typical reasons that you would suspend him (risk to fans, risk to NBA) were not present, and in fact, Davis may have exposed some problems with Bulls security, and alcohol policy.

    (Note: I'm not for a more restrictive serving policy, but I am in favor of throwing out intoxicated people with greater frequency).

    By Blogger PaulNoonan, at 11:55 AM  

  • Well, replace the word "intoxicated" with something along the lines of "rowdy" and I'll agree with you. I think there are a lot of asshole fans at sporting events who shouldn't be tolerated, but I think some of them are sober, and I think some people who get drunk behave themselves.

    Here's something I was just thinking about: What if it had been a white player who ran into the stands to defend his wife? I actually think the NBA would have to be a little harder on him just to fend off accusations that it was a racial thing.

    By Blogger MDS, at 12:00 PM  

  • True, but unless there is vomiting, most intoxicated people who are under control are never noticed. I think that most obnoxious people at sporting events drink specifically to justify being obnoxious. But if there's a sober asshole at a game, I'm fine throwing him out as well.

    I think you're right about the racial angle. If it was a white guy I bet they would come down harder.

    By Blogger PaulNoonan, at 12:22 PM  

  • Five game suspension. David Stern is trying to send a message, but I think a one-game suspension would have sent a much better message. There's no way you can say this is one-sixth as bad as what Stephen Jackson did in the Palace last year.

    By Blogger MDS, at 6:45 PM  

  • On the other hand, Davis had the prior warning of the Jackson / Artest precedent. Stern is basically obligated to give stiff penalties to discourage players from making decisions based on what they see as justifying breaking the rule and then throwing a fit when Stern doesn't agree with them on it.

    By Anonymous Scott H, at 7:28 PM  

  • That's true, Scott H. Any NBA player who hasn't gotten the message yet that you just don't run into the stands really needs a reality check, and a five-game suspension might work.

    I've talked to two other people who were at the game last night, and it seems like those of us who watched on TV thought it was worse than those like Paul who were at the game.

    By Blogger MDS, at 8:36 PM  

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