Apparently, during Thursday night's Orlando Magic game against the Houston Rockets a fan decided to heckle Rockets' player, Dikembe Mutombo, by calling him a monkey. Supposedly, he yelled "Mutombo the Monkey", and did it enough to cause Mutombo to make a move toward the stands. A referee ended up restraining Mutombo, though he didn't restrain his hand and Dikembe did get in a nice "one finger salute". The fan was escorted from the building, and it turns out that he's actually a corporate sponsor. From what I've heard, the guy was acting like a jerk during the exchange, and shortly thereafter. However, now it appears that he's changed his tune, and has apologized to Mutombo. He's also "vowed to never attend another Magic game until Mutombo notifies the club to approve his return" and has offered to donate $5000 to a charity of Mutombo's choice.
In light of the unfortunate heckling with racist overtones, it could have been a lot worse. First, it seems that David Stern's plea for NBA players to leave their firearms at home has been accepted. Thankfully Mutombo did not fire any shots as he was leaving the O-Rena. Second, the referees seemingly did a good job of keeping the NBA players and fans from interacting too much. It looks like that chickenwire fence won't be necessary after all. Though, when a corporate sponsor who had "hosted a party 'to sell Magic tickets' last Wednesday night that was attended by Magic players" is the one doing the heckling courtside there might not be much hope for the future.
Personally, I think Mutombo should make the fan wait until February 3rd before he can return to the Magic home games. Not only does he have to sit out for 3 months, but he's also forced to go to a Knicks game for his first one back. Yeah buddy, let's see how much of a fan you really are! A good arm wrestling match to determine his fate might be right up Mutombo's alley as well.
Monday, October 30, 2006
Posted by BDoc at 12:19 PM