"I witnessed my wife being threatened by a man that I learned later to be intoxicated. I saw him touch her, and I know I should not have acted the way I did, but I would have felt terrible if I didn't react. I felt I had to act. There was no time to call security. It happened too quickly." -Antonio Davis
For those who don't know, during the overtime game between the Knicks and Bulls in Chicago....Antonio Davis, during a timeout, jumped over the scorers table and into the stands to confront a fan that was sitting next to his wife. There were no punches thrown; no shoves; and it seemed as if nothing but words were exchanged. Finally, security arrived and Davis was ejected from the game.
Can you imagine what David Stern was thinking as this was going across his TV?
This is the Post-Brawl NBA. It has been 14 months since "The Malace In The Palace"...but in the 10 weeks of this NBA season, we've already seen two instances of players and fans interacting in a "aggressive" way. The first happened in Seattle....when a fight between Ray Allen and Keyon Dooling spilled over into the stands [well, those seats at courside] at Key Arena. Dooling was suspended for 5 games; Allen suspended for 3.
This Davis incident didn't have any physical altercation like that....or anything that happened in Detroit in 2004. But the site of a player jumping over a scorers table....going up about 10 rows....then right into the seats was eerily similar to Ron Artest's path into the Palace stands. Of course, this one had a much calmer conclusion.
It is wild that this would happen to Davis' wife. Davis spent the last two seasons in Chicago and was part of that Bulls team that surprised many with a #4 seed last year.
Of course, in the middle of all this is Larry Brown. In the Malice incident...he was the Pistons coach. Now, he's the Knicks coach and the shoe is on the other foot. Brown had this to say: "Come on, that's his wife. That's entirely different. I was worried about Kendra. That's why he went in the stands, he saw her falling back. That thing that happened in the stands had nothing to do with the two teams. That's a man concerned about his family."
Which is true. I love my wife and I'd hate to be in a position to see somebody harming her. Most men feel the same way. But, the smartest thing to do would be to get security [they are usually some right at courtside] and get them up into the stands to take care of "their job"....with Davis keeping a watchful eye as close as he can from the court. Of course, there still burns in my heart the fact that I really understand him going into the stands and protecting his wife. Believe me.
Expect some sort of discipline for Davis...most likely a suspension. But how lengthy will depend on how the incident is viewed by Stern.