Fans ejected after heckling LeBron James at Lakers game

James made it clear afterward he didn’t think they should have been removed from the Los Angeles-Atlanta match-up.

A married couple was ejected from State Farm Arena, where the Atlanta Hawks were playing the Los Angeles Lakers, after they engaged in a shouting match with NBA superstar LeBron James. 

According to reports, the incident happened with only eight minutes left in the basketball game when NBA officials stopped play and called security on the man and woman. She had her mask beneath her nose and mouth. 

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James runs the offense after they won the tip against the Atlanta Hawks during the first half at State Farm Arena Monday in Atlanta. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

NBA fans have been able to return to arenas to watch games in an extremely limited capacity as the coronavirus pandemic continues. Only 1,341 people were allowed to attend Monday’s game in Atlanta. 

The booted couple, Chris and Juliana Carlos, said they were ejected from the game, and Mrs. Carlos took to Instagram to give her account of the incident. Reports indicate another couple was also booted from the arena; in her video, Carlos alleges that the NBA player told her to “sit down, and shut the f**k up.”

She claimed she was shouting at James after he was being heckled by her husband, and the two exchanged words. 

After the game, James made it clear he didn’t think the fans should have been removed from the arena. 

“At the end of the day, I’m happy fans are back in the building,” James said. “I miss that interaction. I need that interaction. We, as players, need that interaction. I don’t think that they were warranted to be kicked out.”

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“There was a back-and-forth between two grown men. He said his piece, I said my piece, and then someone else jumped into it and said their piece,” continued James. “I didn’t think they should be kicked out, but they might have had a couple of drinks, maybe. And they could have probably kept it going, and the game wouldn’t have been about the game anymore. So, I think the referees did what they had to do.”

On Twitter, James referred to Juliana Carlos as “Courtside Karen,” and the nickname quickly stuck, becoming a trending topic. 

Not even a cranked-up Courtside Karen could stop the legendary hooper, who still lead his Lakers team to victory, 107-99, over the Hawks. 

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