Cameras caught the fan throwing the bottle at Irving as the Nets’ guard was walking back to the locker room with teammate Tyler Johnson. Irving and Johnson turned back and later the fan, who was in a Celtics Kevin Garnett jersey, was put into handcuffs by Boston police and led out of the arena.
The fan was identified Monday as 21-year-old Cole Buckley of Braintree, Mass. He is facing charges for assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, according to Boston 25 News.
Buckley is set to be arraigned Monday in Boston Municipal Court, according to CBS Boston.
Irving spoke out about the incident with reporters.
“(It’s) just underlying racism, and treating people like they’re in a human zoo,” the Nets star said.
“Throwing stuff at people, saying things. There’s a certain point where it gets to be too much. You see people just feel very entitled out here. … As a Black man playing in the NBA, dealing with a lot of this stuff, it’s fairly difficult. You never know what’s going to happen,” he added.
It was just the latest incident involving fans at NBA games.
A total of five fans were banned from three separate incidents last week. One fan dumped popcorn on Russell Westbrook, another spit on Trae Young and three racially taunted Ja Morant’s family.