A group of Atlanta Hawks fans were ejected from the city’s State Farm Arena after a couple began screaming at LeBron James. The Los Angeles Lakers were playing against the Hawks on Monday night (Feb. 1) when husband and wife Juliana and Chris Carlos began heckling the NBA superstar.
Video of the incident showed Juliana, who had pulled down her face mask, yelling and pointing at LeBron. The white woman is reportedly an Instagram model and took to her page after she was ejected to share her side of the story.
“So, I’m minding my own business… and Chris has been a Hawks fan forever,” she said on IG Live. “He has this issue with LeBron. I don’t have an issue with LeBron. I don’t give a fuck about LeBron.”
Juliana then went on to claim that her husband and LeBron began exchanging words back and forth before she jumped in.
“I go, ‘Don’t fucking talk to my husband!’ And he looks at me and he goes, ‘Sit the fuck down, bitch.’ And I go, ‘Don’t fucking call me a b*tch. You sit the fuck down!’” she said.
In a post-game interview, LeBron confirmed that Carlos had yelled something “out of bounds” at him and said he and the man had exchanged some words.
“There was a back and forth between two grown men and we said our piece. He said his piece; I said my piece and then someone else jumped into it and said their piece.”
LeBron mostly laughed off the incident, though, and said he was just glad to have fans back at games.
“I’m happy fans are back in the building. I miss that interaction; I need that interaction,” he said. “We as players need that interaction.”
The Lakers small forward added that didn’t feel it was “warranted” to kick the couple out, but realized the referees “had to do what they had to do.”
“They might’ve had a couple drinks maybe and they could’ve kept it going and it probably wouldn’t have been about the game no more,” he said about the couple. “So, I think the referees had to do what they had to do.”
It was LeBron’s Twitter reflection, though, that made the incident start trending.
“Courtside Karen was MAD MAD!!” he wrote, prompting hours of jokes.
See LeBron and Juliana’s responses below.