Mark Stevens, the minority co-owner of NBA Golden States Warriors, has been banned from NBA games for one-year and fined $500,000 for his altercation with Toronto Raptors All-Star player Kyle Lowry during the game 3 of the NBA finals.
Mark Stevens was banned by NBA and his own team, the Warriors, for pushing Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry who was going for a loose ball, and jumped into the stands where Mark Stevens and his friends were seated at the front row at the Oracle Arena, during game 3 of the NBA finals on Wednesday.
Mark Stevens whom video clips showed he was far from where Lowry landed, took matters into his own hands, as he angrily shoved him off. He was later escorted off the court by security, and while other NBA players have put out a statement on the event, others are calling Mark Stevens a racist.
According to CNN report, the NBA on Thursday announced it was banning Stevens from attending any team activities through the end of next season’s playoffs.
Earlier an NBA spokesman said team representatives are held to the highest possible standard.
“The conduct of Golden State Warriors investor Mark Stevens last night was beyond unacceptable and has no place in our league,” the spokesman, Mike Bass, said in a statement.
The Warriors released a statement on Stevens earlier Thursday.
“Mr Stevens’ behaviour last night did not reflect the high standards that we hope to exemplify as an organization,” the statement said.
“We’re extremely disappointed in his actions and, along with Mr Stevens, offer our sincere apology to Kyle Lowry and the Toronto Raptors organization for this unfortunate misconduct. There is no place for such interaction between fans — or anyone — and players at an NBA game.”
Stevens said in a statement Thursday that he accepts his punishment.
“I take full responsibility for my actions last night at the NBA Finals and am embarrassed by what transpired,” Stevens said. “What I did was wrong and there is no excuse for it.
“Mr Lowry deserves better, and I have reached out today in an attempt to directly apologize to him and other members of the Raptors and Warriors organizations. I’m grateful to those who accepted my calls. I hope that Mr Lowry and others impacted by this lapse in judgment understand that the behaviour I demonstrated last night does not reflect the person I am or have been throughout my life. I made a mistake and I’m truly sorry. I need to be better and look forward to making it right.”
Speaking to reporters Thursday, Lowry said: “there’s no room in our game” for what Stevens did.
“In that situation, I don’t think I could have handled it any better,” Lowry said. “I’m glad I did what I did, and I understand that things could have been a lot different if I reacted a different way or if I did something or put my hands on him or did anything of that nature.
“But the support I’ve gotten from fellow players, the league, has been unbelievable. With that being said, I think more should be done. He’s not a good look for the ownership group that they have. And I know Joe Lacob. Those guys are great guys. The ownership that they have that I know, they’re unbelievable guys. But a guy like that, showing his true class, and he shouldn’t be a part of our league. There’s just no place for that.”