When the Memphis Grizzlies return to play the Utah Jazz in Salt Lake City for Game 5, three fans will not have the opportunity to attend. ESPN reports three fans have been banned from the Vivint Arena after making vulgar and racist statements toward the parents of Ja Morant.
The Utah Jazz released a statement citing a “verbal altercation” during the Wednesday night game, however, Morant’s father, Tee Morant, stated three different incidents occurred.
“I know heckling,” Tee Morant said. “We were doing that the whole game. But that’s different than heckling. That’s straight up disrespectful. That was too far out of line. You don’t say nothing like that heckling. That’s beyond heckling.”
Morant stated that he and his family engaged with the Utah Jazz fans who were overall friendly but there were a set of fans who took things too far. Morant would state one fan made a sexually explicit remark to his wife, prompting a response from Morant and the eventual rejection of the fan.
In addition, another Jazz fan told Morant, “I’ll put a nickel in your back and watch you dance, boy.” He was confronted by other Jazz fans and ejected from the game. A third fan told Morant’s wife “Shut the fuck up, bitch.”
“The Utah Jazz have zero tolerance for offensive or disruptive behavior,” the Jazz said in a statement Thursday. “An incident occurred last night involving a verbal altercation during Game 2. Arena security staff intervened, and the investigation resulted in the removal and banning of three Jazz fans indefinitely.”
Jazz superstar Donovan Mitchell supported the decision.