Well. I just saw something that I never thought I’d see in American professional sports: an all-out brawl between the National Basketball Association's Detroit Pistons, the Indiana Pacers and the fans in the Auburn Hills Arena (
Detroit 45 miles north of Detroit; thanks, Solomon).
Beer, punches, bodies and epithets were flying all over the place. Blame the Pistons’ Ben Wallace for the first shot, but blame all of the others for their equal or worse lack of self-control.
Los Angeles KCAL9’s Pat Harvey suggested that both teams—all of whom violated the NBA’s up-off-the-bench rule—be suspended for the year.
I agree. Punish the guilty: both the players and the fans.
Don’t let our sports icons and fans become like those of the Europeans.
AFTERTHOUGHT: In addition to the season-long team suspension, fine all the players that were off the bench for $200,000, whether they make 600K or 16 million a year; and ban all the involved fans from any NBA games for two years. Prosecute the guilty, both player and fan alike.
Yes, all these clowns ticked me straight off. Grow up, "gentlemen."
UPDATE: The full report, so far. I would have linked to the Daily Recycler for the video, but the Ku Klux Klan seems to have invaded the comments section for the post. Somebody call Orkin.
This incident is what I get for ripping on Spanish soccer fans the other day. ;-)
(Thanks to Roger L. Simon)
UPDATE: Four players are suspended for the foreseeable future.
NEW YORK - Indiana's Ron Artest, Jermaine O'Neal and Stephen Jackson, and Detroit's Ben Wallace were suspended indefinitely by the NBA on Saturday for taking part in one of the ugliest brawls in U.S. sports history, a fight with fans that commissioner David Stern called "shocking, repulsive and inexcusable."Good, but there must be someway in which Detroit fans can also feel the pain.
Reading the article further, Artest sounds like a candidate for a lifetime NBA ban.
UPDATE: The verdict: Artest suspended for 30 games, O'Neal and Jackson for 20 and Wallace for 5. The first three got off light, but Wallace's suspension was heavier than he deserved, in my opinion. After all, the sort of thing he did happens all the time in the NBA with the offending player usually being ejected from the game or being suspended for one game at most, along with being fined. True, his action was (arguably) the catalyst for the brawl. But how was he to know that the Piston fans and the three Pacers were going to lose their collective minds?
CORRECTION: Artest: rest of the season; Jackson: 30 games; O'Neal: 25; Wallace: 6.
...Pacers guard Anthony Johnson got five games...[SNIP]
Four players were suspended for a game apiece: Indiana's Reggie Miller, and Detroit's Chauncey Billups, Elden Campbell and Derrick Coleman.