Well you knew this was coming. On Tuesday, the NBA announced that Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic has been fined $40,000 for confronting a fan and throwing said fan's phone into the stands following Portland's 129-98 loss to the Indiana Pacers on Sunday night.
Here's what the league had to say about the incident:
Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic has been fined $40,000 for confronting a fan courtside and grabbing the fan's cell phone and throwing it into the spectator stands, it was announced today by Byron Spruell, President, League Operations. The incident occurred following the Trail Blazers' 129-98 loss to the Indiana Pacers on March 20 at Gainbridge Fieldhouse.
After the final buzzer sounded Nurkic walked over to the fan, who was sitting courtside, grabbed the phone out of his hand, tossed it into the stands and stared at the fan for a moment before walking away. You can see the incident below:
Since Nurkic is sidelined with an injury, he didn't address the media regarding the situation. According to Chris Haynes of Yahoo, the heckler in Indiana taunted Nurkic about his mother and grandmother, who died of COVID in 2020.
Fans often cross the line, and it's understandable that players get fed up with their behavior at times. However, even though the things the fan reportedly said were reprehensible, Nurkic had other avenues to deal with the fan. He could have alerted arena security, as other players have done in the past. Instead, he let his emotions get the best of him, and now he'll have to pay for it, literally.