UPDATE: The NBA has released a statement on Warriors minority owner Mark Stevens shoving Raptors guard Kyle Lowry, saying that an investigation is going on into the incident. While that is happening, Stevens is banned from attending NBA games.
“A team representative must be held to the highest possible standard ad the conduct of Golden State Warriors investor Mark Stevens last night was beyond unacceptable and has no place in our league,” NBA Executive Vice President of Communications Mike Bass said. “As the review of the matter continues, Mr. Stevens will not be permitted to attend NBA games.”
EARLIER: The Raptors took a 2-1 series lead over the Warriors on Wednesday night with a 123-109 win in Game 3 in Oakland. Against a shorthanded Golden State squad, the Raptors did exactly what they needed to in order to go back in front in the series and place the pressure firmly back on the Warriors entering Game 4.
It was hard to take too much away from the game. The Warriors desperately miss the presence of Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, and Kevon Looney — arguably more on the defensive end than on offense — and the Raptors continue to get rather inspiring efforts out of their role players around Kawhi Leonard — which was a question mark heading into the Finals. Other than that, the dynamic will likely change in Game 4 with Thompson expected back, at the least, so after Game 3 another story took center stage.
Kyle Lowry, who had a spectacular game, found himself in a brief altercation with a fan after he chased a loose ball into the first row. The fan in question reached over and pushed Lowry, who says the fan also said “vulgar” things to him. Not long after, those in the arena noticed that seat was empty as the fan had apparently been removed, and Lowry called for him to be banned afterwards.