Basketball

Kyrie Irving: NBA arenas becoming like ‘human zoos’

Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving said NBA arenas had become like "human zoos" after a fan was arrested for throwing a water bottle at the former Boston Celtic guard yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Video posted on social media showed the bottle narrowly missed Irving, who scored 39 points in Game 4 as the Nets beat the Celtics 141-126 to take a 3-1 lead in their Eastern Conference first-round play-off series.

The Athletic reported that the fan could be banned for life from Boston's TD Garden.

"It's unfortunate that sports has come to this crossroads where a lot of old ways are coming up," Irving, who played for the Celtics from 2017-19, said after the match.

"It's been that way for entertainment for a long time with underlying racism and just treating people like they are in a human zoo."

The conduct of fans has been an issue for the NBA lately, with five spectators hit with indefinite bans for "completely unacceptable" behaviour towards players and their families in separate incidents last week.

Nets forward Kevin Durant said fans need to "grow up".

He said: "We are not animals, we are not in the circus. You coming to the game is not all about you as a fan. So, have some respect for the game." - REUTERS

OTHER RESULTS

LA Lakers 92 Phoenix Suns 100

*Series tied at 2-2

Atlanta Hawks 113 New York Knicks 96

*Atlanta lead 3-1

Dallas Mavericks 81 LA Clippers 106

*Series tied at 2-2

Basketball