HOUSTON (AP) — Philadelphia 76ers center Jahlil Okafor says he’s embarrassed about a Boston nightclub scuffle captured on video and is dealing with the team and league on possible discipline.
“It was definitely dumb on my part,” Okafor said following a shootaround Friday, several hours before the Houston Rockets were scheduled to host the Sixers. “Something I’m embarrassed about. Still dealing with the league and the team but I’m not happy about it all. We’re still going through the process of what we’re going to do.”
Okafor said he reacted to heckling about the 0-16 Sixers, the only team in the NBA without a win. He said he told 76ers coach Brett Brown about what happened during the team’s plane ride to Houston.
TMZ posted cellphone video of the altercation on Thursday showing Okafor yelling and later shoving a man outside the club. Boston police said Friday they do not plan to investigate unless someone involved comes forward to say they were the victim of a crime.
Okafor is expected to play Friday night.
Brown said the team will handle the situation internally and he expects input from the league.
“This is not something that we dismiss,” Brown said. “We pay attention. We walk that line of doing what we need to to help educate and discipline anybody and help them understand if the situation were to present itself again how are you going to handle it.”
The 76ers recently discussed how to handle these kinds of situations, with Brown and team staff showing videos and saying that when out after 3 a.m., nothing good happens.
The Sixers don’t have a curfew but the team asks players to make responsible decisions, Brown said. He said the team won’t change how it handles players following games.
“Jahlil (Okafor) knows if he had to (tell him about an altercation) again he would walk,” he said. “It’s an unfortunate thing. As coach of the team its part of one of the many layers you have to do to coach young people.”
Brown said it’s a learning experience for Okafor being one of the younger guys in the NBA.
Okafor said the embarrassment is the toughest part about the situation.
“I’m ashamed with what I did and that’s not who I am,” he said. “Everybody that reached out to me that’s in my circle they know that’s not who I am. So I have a great support system and they will continue to support me.”