LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles Clippers guard Austin Rivers was fined $25,000 by the NBA on Thursday, following an incident in which he hit a seat cushion that flew into the stands and hit a fan.
The accident took place during a play stoppage in the fourth quarter of the Clippers’ 111-104 victory over the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday night at Sleep Train Arena.
“The pillow was light and it just flew into the air backwards. I didn’t really look when it went into the crowd,” Rivers said at his locker before the Clipppers’ home opener against Dallas. “I actually stood up for a second and I was like, ‘I apologize. I didn’t mean to do that.’
“I tried to tell the NBA that,” he added. “This has never happened before with me. I don’t have a history of throwing things. It’s unfortunate, but you just learn your lesson not to take your anger out on anything. I told the NBA that I apologize and that it will never happen again.”
Rivers, the son of Clippers coach Doc Rivers, invited the fan, who was hit by the seat cushion, and her family back to the lockerroom area after the game and personally apologized to them before having his photo taken with the injured party.
“It was not my intention to hurt any fan. No fan should go to the game and have to worry about something hitting them in the face,” Rivers said.
“She was very nice about it. The bottom line was, it was an accident. I didn’t throw anything at anybody. Throwing something and hitting something that went somewhere are two different things.
I try to stay clear of things like this. I mean, this fine was more than what I got for being ejected from a game two years ago.”