Kyrie Irving fined for NBA fan spat
Kyrie Irving is off to a rocky start with the Boston Celtics after the league slapped the point guard with a $25,000 fine on Sunday for verbally abusing a Philadelphia 76ers fan.
The exchange took place at halftime of the Celtics 102-92 win on Friday over the 76ers when a fan made a reference to Irving’s former teammate LeBron James as the teams were heading to the locker rooms at the Wells Fargo Center arena.
“Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving has been fined $25,000 for using inappropriate language when responding to a fan,” league vice president Kiki VanDeWeghe said in a statement.
The Celtics aquired Irving in an offseason move after he demanded a trade from the NBA finals runner-up Cleveland Cavaliers.
It is the second time in as many days the NBA has fined one of its players for an incident with a fan. On Saturday VanDeWeghe announced that DeMarcus Cousins had been fined $25,000 after the New Orleans Pelican player got into a heated exchange with a female fan during a game in Memphis.
The fan in Philadelphia reportedly yelled “Kyrie, where’s LeBron” as the Celtics walked past, drawing a response from Irving.
Irving admitted he yelled at the fan, which was caught on video, but when asked by ESPN.com if he had any regrets said, “Hell no”.
Irving then talked about the exchange like it was a run in with another NBA player.
“At the end of the day, we’re human. It’s in the heat of the moment, and frustrations arises. We were at halftime, we were down by four, in an environment, a season opener in Philly,” he said.
The Cavaliers’ trade of Irving to the Celtics for guard Isaiah Thomas, forward Jae Crowder, rookie centre Ante Zizic and two draft picks in August was one of the league’s blockbuster deals of the offseason.