The Philadelphia 76ers fan who was forced out of his seat for flashing double middle fingers on Russell Westbrook has apologized for his actions but said he was provoked by the OKC Thunder superstar.
“As a part-time comedian I realize that my words and actions are sometimes inappropriate,” Richard Harkaway said in a statement to Philly.com issued by a personal representative.
“In this instance, after standing up to boo and being provoked by Russell Westbrook calling attention to my being overweight, my action in response was clearly inexcusable and I am embarrassed. I sincerely apologize to my fellow Sixers fans, the Sixers organization, my colleagues and patients, and to Mr. Westbrook for my behavior,” the statement said.
Harkaway, a urologist from North Philadelphia, was sitting in the second row of the baseline seats when he stood up and put his middle fingers directly toward Westbrook’s face during the first quarter and said, “F— you!”
Westbrook looked at the nearby referee with a confused look and said, “Can he do that?”
Venue security staff escorted Harkaway from his seat, but multiple reports stated that he was allowed to stay in the arena for the rest of the game.