First of all, I ill say I've been a season ticket holder for four years. I have seen my share of obnoxius fans. In certain games (L*kers anyone?), emotions can run high. I get that.
That being said, as I watch my team improve and people come back to the Garden, I am finding myself become increasingly disillusioned in certain outliers of Blazer Nation and the staff of our home building.
The game started great. There were several new fans around us and they were very excited to be at the game, singing, dancing, screaming, high fiving. There were many kids who were enthralled by the spectacle and noise. One row ahead of us was a couple proudly sporting their Golden State shirts. As the game began it became apparent that they were serious fans, equally having as much fun as the Blazer faithful. They loved their team, which was fun to see. They weren't over the top, didn't get in anyone's face and graciously accepted the friendly ribbing from those around them. Through it all, they enthusiatically cheered for their Warriors. It as a true lovefest in upper 209.
Then, around halfway through the second quarter, the Blazers dropped the popcorn on 118. Two guys (older father and son?) thought it would be fun to join in, and throw popcorn at said Warrior fans from their seats in the luxury box, a few feet away. "Ha ha...good one" was the response. It continued, and more Blazer fans were receiving the gift from above than the visiting fans. The girl Warrior fan turned around and said she was allergic to popcorn (OK OK, maybe not ...but still) and sternly asked them to stop. They did not. The guy jumped in and told them to knock it off. They responded with several choice words and spent the rest of the half chiding them and their friends (Blazer fans). It was clearly getting out of control. The guy Warrior fan went down to talk to our usher or whatever they are.
Never did anyone enter the luxury box to check things out. Not once did the usher come up to keep an eye on the situation. Steadily the tone of the arguing increased. I went and talked to an usher. Nothing. Language became more colorful, nasty names were thrown around, people were flipping each other off. The guys in the box were telling other Blazer fans to dump their bags of popcorn on the Warrior fans. When they declined, the guys then had some choice words for them as well. A grandfather with his young grandson had enough and left the game. It was sad to see.
Once the game ended many of us watched the situation out of the corners of our eyes. The guys started walking up the stairs of the box, but then the older of the two decided he wasn't done... he came to the edge of the box and started threatening the group. He was relentless. I stayed in case he decided to come over the wall. I could help restrain him if need be. Who else was going to do it? I pleaded with the other people in the box to get him out of there. Take him into the hall or something. He was out of control and it was time to go. The richie richertons in said box didn't bat an eye, but rather sat drinking their beers and watched what was brewing, some even smiling.
Finally the friend of the Warrior fans, who had been the recipient of most of the threats and foul language, was fed up. He took his beer a threw it at the guy, spraying many of us in the process. I didn't mind. The guy was stunned and had it coming. Finally, a mousy usher comes up and starts chiding those of us in the 200 level and tried to actually push me into the aisle (nice try, maybe next time). I explained the situation and asked the usher not to touch me. The guy in the box then started calling me an a**h*** and the usher got a deer in the headlights look about him. The usher said he couldn't do anything and I needed to leave, which I did, quietly fuming the whole way down as I was being called names. Way to go usher dude. Ever think about becoming an NBA ref?
It's nice to know the one guy who was trying to keep the peace was the guy who got the brunt of the 'security'.
I am very disappointed in the jerks from the luxury box. I am embarrased for the kids and first timers who were around us. I am mortified that no one at the Rose Garden did a thing to calm the situation. I pay way too much to have to deal with this sort of thing. That's my vent. Thanks for reading.
Anyone else noticing the Garden becoming more and more hostile? I read a post about the trouble in the three hundred level last week and it was disheartening to say the least. Those of us who are not fighters try to do as we're told by the jumbotron and report any questionable behavior in the stands, but the crew from the Garden stands by and lets it continue. It may not be long before something serious happens and it'll be too late. Not sure I want to expose my kid to that. Leaves a bad taste in my mouth and overshadows what would have been a great game. Sad.