Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Fan Wars Episode 4- The Mavs Fans Strike Back

I feel like I'm under house arrest today in Phoenix. The news channels have put the fear of Obama traffic in everyone since the president is speaking at the ASU graduation today. We aren't supposed to approach Tempe if we can help it. I just envision the place sealed off like some scene from Escape from New York.

I was going to make my post about Obama's visit, but there isn't much to it. Peo
ple who have the "privilege" of going have to arrive early and stand around in triple digit heat for hours and they aren't allowed to bring water bottles or seat cushions in with them (there will be water stations). So the scene will be a bunch of people sitting on metal bleachers that have been scorched by the sun listening to our well-spoken president explain to the students that there are no jobs and that they're basically screwed for the next year. The Daily Show already covered the issues of the commencement anyways.

So I'm here to bring you the real controversy of the day: The visiting fan versus the home fans.

The Dallas Mavericks and Denver Nuggets renew their playoff festivities tonight at the Pepsi Center. You, of course, won't catch much of the first half because you will already be engrossed by Game Seven of the Caps and Penguins I told you about. But when you do tune in, you will find a suddenly bitter rivalry between the Mavs and Nuggets due mostly to the events following the controversial ending to Game Three.

You already know about the Mark Cuban vs. Kenyon Martin's mom issue. You've probab
ly also heard about Carmelo Anthony's fiance La La Vazquez claiming that Mavs fans are racists who spent part of Game Three insulting her before she was escorted away by security.

Well now a new chapter has been opened in the great Game Three saga. A Mavericks
season ticket holder contacted the Dallas Morning News to say that it was La La who was out of line during the game. According to the Dallas fan, "Ms. Vazquez claims that racism and insults to her child were the reasons for her aggression are completely unfounded. Her child was not with her but with a nanny and was not a topic of insults or discussion at all. I heard no racism and was definitely within hearing distance. Her reaction was immature and borderline scary." The fan also said that while there was some heckling, none of it was directed at Kenyon Martin's mom.

So what's the truth? We've all been to sporting events where people in the crowd start acting like jack asses towards opposing fans. You hear stories out of Philadelphia, New York, Oakland, and most other major cities about bad fan behavior. A person should be able to go see an away sporting event without having to abnegate their rights to respect and decency.

Then again, I've also been to sporting events where the opposing fans more than deserve a beat down. I've sat next to someone who spent the entire game hurling insults at the home team and then acted appalled when home fans turned on them.

There are two different sides to the story and there isn't a way to prove who is correct. Sports by Brooks has a poll asking which person is more likely telling the truth, the Mavs fan or La La, and 92% of the readers say the Mavs fan is probably being more truthful. I happen to agree, mostly because I still have fresh memories of Jason Kidd's ex-wife causing a stink up in Boston for being singled out even though she went out of her way to get attention at all times.

Tonight's game is in Denver which means the Mavs will hear it from Nuggets fans and Dirk will no doubt see multiple posters making fun of his personal life. Hopefully, the Nuggets fans will be funny as they hurl their verbal arrows. The good news is that Mark Cuban won't be there to stir things up. I can only hope that La La will follow suit.

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