A young fan “put his hands” on Chris Paul’s mother and wife during the Phoenix Suns’ game 4, 111-101 loss to the Dallas Mavericks on May 9, 2022. This incident raises the question: should families of NBA players have separated sections away from fans?
During game four of the Phoenix Suns and Dallas Mavericks series, an already bad day for Chris Paul was soon to get worse. After fouling out with 8:58 left in the quarter, Paul’s mother and wife were both touched by a Mavericks fan in the fourth quarter. Paul responded on Twitter shortly after the incident saying, “Wanna fine players for saying stuff to the fans but the fans can put they hands on our families,” referring to Kyrie Irving being fined after making obscene gestures to the crowd in response to heavy heckling directed towards Irving.
The Mavericks also responded after being contacted by The Republic due to Paul’s Tweet. “The Dallas Mavericks are aware of an incident between a fan and the family of Chris Paul. It was unacceptable behavior and will not be tolerated. The Mavericks, along with American Airlines Center, swiftly removed the fan from today’s game.” These two fans involved were later banned from the stadium until 2023.
On social media, many people were asking should the families of players sit with the crowd, considering their higher status and connection to the players. A great deal of fans pointed out it may be dangerous for the families because more incidents such as this one with Chris Paul may occur again but with worse harm to the families. I personally believe that the families of players should have separate sections for safety reasons to avoid any worse actions against the player’s family.