So you’re sitting courtside at Game 3 of the NBA Finals. Unless you’ve won a contest, or have incredibly benevolent rich friends, you are a person of wealth. In fact, in some cases, you may even be a part owner of the Golden State Warriors, which affords you the opportunity to be both rich and have a financial stake in what’s happening on the court. This could be said to create almost a feeling of ownership over what happens on the court and the people on it. A sense of entitlement pervades.
Now, as it happens during this specific game, one of the players on the Raptors, who are playing the Warriors for the NBA title, comes flying your way in an attempt to save a loose ball. This is Kyle Lowry. He does this often. It’s one of his things.
It’s also a sequence of events that happens fairly regularly in an NBA game. The ball heads for the stands, which are very close to the court — everyone knows this, even rich people — and the speed of the player in their desperation sends them careening into the first row or two. In this case, Lowry dives into that front row of seats, some people are forced to absorb his momentum — which is, again, part of the implicit risk of sitting courtside to begin with — and then play prepares to resume.
Kyle Lowry shoved by a fan at Oracle Arena... #WeTheNorth | #NBAFinals pic.twitter.com/XMRrqfnjAH— Tim and Sid (@timandsid) June 6, 2019
Except, wait, play does not resume. You there in your courtside seat, directly adjacent to Lowry’s landing, decide to extend your arm and shove him angrily. According to him, you also decide to direct some profane language his way. The content of those words is only heard by the people nearby in the moment. But Lowry was there. He heard. And he does not care for any of this one bit.
So, now you’re faced with a dilemma. Lowry is upset. The NBA is mad. And the Warriors ownership group, a cadre of obscenely wealthy people, your people, the same folks currently lording over this patch of land in Oakland where the Warriors play basketball games (for now; the team is set to move to an even more expensive spot in San Francisco next season), are in a tough spot. They have to respond. They have to make it clear to all that this cannot happen, and will not happen again. Being a part owner of the team does not mean you can do what you want with anyone else who happens to be in the arena. Especially not one of the players on the other team, no matter how badly they happen to be beating your team at the time.
A statement is issued. An investigation is launched. You must make amends.
The Warriors have released a statement about last night’s incident involving Warriors investor Mark Stevens shoving Kyle Lowry, which includes an apology from the organization and says the investigation is ongoing: pic.twitter.com/E8OQN3GPOC— Tim Bontemps (@TimBontemps) June 6, 2019
Fortunately, while all that is going on, that’s where we come in. We’re here to help. If you (or anyone else) decides it might be time to lay their hands on Kyle Lowry or any other professional basketball player — on the Raptors or otherwise — here are some things you could do instead in that exact moment, or at any other time in your life.
This is by no means a complete list. But since you will now be watching the rest of the NBA Finals from home (if you opt to watch at all), we wanted to be as fulsome as possible. As a first cut, here we go:
- take up tennis;
- take up boxing, if still feeling aggressive;
- settle on a new HBO show to catch up on; Barry is pretty good;
- watch The Souvenir, a sad and moving film, less time consuming than new TV;
- donate some of your money to charity or other good causes;
- pay your taxes;
- consider what the word “ownership” means in the context of a professional sports arena;
- attend to the care of those around you, e.g. that lady behind you in the second row looked like she got flung back pretty hard. We hope she’s OK;
- put your hands in your pockets and leave them there;
- practice mindfulness with others; and
- just, like, don’t angrily push people who are trying to do their job for your entertainment. The people therein are not your property and you have no sovereignty over them, even if you are a part owner of the wider business in which they operate. In fact, you would be wise to consider how thin the ice is on which you skate, people are getting a little tired of bullshit billionaires doing what they want; and
- learn how to skate;
Yes, a mere small selection of ideas. Hope it helps!
This is a nice start, but not nearly enough.
Warriors minority owner Mark Stevens has been banned for one year and fined $500,000 for pushing and cursing at Kyle Lowry last night. pic.twitter.com/B4fw8zlEAJ— Tim Bontemps (@TimBontemps) June 6, 2019