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A loss on the court was reportedly far from the only concern for Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul on Sunday.
Paul turned heads following the Dallas Mavericks’ 111-101 victory in Game 4 of their second-round playoff series when he suggested fans at American Airlines Center “put they hands” on members of his family:
ESPN’s Dave McMenamin reported that fans pushed Paul’s wife, Jada, and placed hands on his mother, Robin. What’s more, his children reportedly witnessed the harassment, which left his family feeling “very unsafe.”
The Mavericks released a statement that said: “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.”
Fan behavior has been a focal point at times during these playoffs.
Philadelphia 76ers big man Joel Embiid called out Toronto Raptors fans for their chants during the first round. Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green criticized Memphis Grizzlies fans for booing him when he was injured, which prompted him to flip them off as he left the court.
The NBA fined Green $25,000.
Sunday’s alleged harassment isn’t the first altercation in the series between the Suns and Mavericks, as Dallas star Luka Doncic had to be held back from going at it with a fan when the series was in Phoenix:
Bleacher Report @BleacherReport
Luka had to be held back after getting into with a Suns fan 👀 pic.twitter.com/8hS36zR7KC
As for the actual basketball, Sunday was a day to forget for Paul. He crowded out in just 23 minutes of action and was on the bench for all of crunch time as the Mavericks put the game away.
Six Dallas players scored in double figures, including Doncic (26 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds) and Dorian Finney-Smith (24 points, eight rebounds and 8-of-12 shooting from three-point range).
The series returns to Phoenix for a critical Game 5 on Tuesday.