Much is being made of Davis' reaction to the game-winning shot, as he appeared to push a 12-year-old Orlando Magic fan on his way back to the Boston bench (fast forward to the 0:55 mark for a good look). In fact, the father of the boy demanded an apology from Davis for the incident:
"Orlando Magic fan Ernest Provetti said Davis shoved his 12-year-old son Nicholas with such force after Davis made a game-winning jumper, that Nicholas’ baseball cap catapulted into the air and his son dove into his courtside seat."
There is no denying that Davis did put his hand on Provetti's back, and the force sent him staggering a bit. I am in no way trying to condone players making contact with fans, so please do not take it as such.
In retrospect, Davis should have done all he could to avoid making contact. But to say things like "catapulted into the air" and "dove into his courtside seat?" I've seen the replay, give me a break.
Provetti went on, "The NBA makes it clear to not cross the sideline. If I cross that line, the NBA will take away my tickets. It’s a double standard.”
You know what else is a double standard? Demanding an apology because your team lost.
I'm pretty sure that if Dwight Howard or Rashard Lewis or any other Magic player hit a game-winning buzzer beater and hit Nicholas on the back, it would be one of the greatest experiences of his life. He'd probably be telling all his friends at school about how he was right there and got a high five from the team.
Finally, Provetti said Davis conducted himself like a “raging animal with no regard for fans’ personal safety."
Davis hit a huge shot that not only won the game but rejuvenated his team and regained home court advantage for the Celtics in the series. He is going to be emotional. We've seen players go into the stands intentionally before, and this was not one of those cases. I find it extremely hard to believe that he was intentionally trying to hit a Magic fan, let alone a kid.
Since making the demand for an apology, Provetti has cooled and said that he reacted emotionally and will back off. Maybe he realized that Davis reacted emotionally, too.
All quotes taken from the Orlando Sentinel.
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