Isaiah Thomas didn’t actually hit the fan he swore at in Washington, but the NBA just hit back to the tune of $25,000. The league announced Wednesday it would fine the Boston Celtics guard heavily for “directing inappropriate language toward a fan” during a Game 4 loss to the Washington Wizards on Sunday night.
Money is likely the least of his worries after the month he’s had, but it’s a stiff punishment for an incident that was caught on camera during a timeout during Sunday’s loss. Thomas walked toward the bench when a Wizards fan heckler got on him. Cameras caught him telling the fan off, saying “I’ll f**k you up and you know that.”
Thomas’ threats never went beyond verbal, but much like Demarcus Cousins earlier in the season, the league decided to fine Thomas for his words. Clearly his frustrations got the better of him in Game 4, as he complained about officiating after the game as well. But after losing a tooth earlier in the series and continuing to deal with the tragic death of his sister, it’s likely the last thing on his mind as the Celtics prepare for Game 5 at home.
Still, it sets a precedent for players not to respond as they are bound to hear more heckling as the postseason stakes are raised. Not only are cameras always rolling, but the league is watching the video and doling out fines.