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Ball Don't Lie

Flo Rida’s manager asked not to attend NBA Finals in Miami on Gregg Popovich’s alleged request

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Flo Rida attends Game 1 of the NBA Finals. The woman to his left is not his manager (Mike Ehrmann/ Getty).

The NBA Finals are a hot ticket, which means that famous people and their friends are bound to show up in the first few rows to get a firsthand look (and get noticed) at the biggest games of the NBA schedule. On certain occasions, those celebrities end up becoming stories only slightly less attention-grabbing than the play on the court. In Game 7 of the Miami Heat's Eastern Conference Finals, Freezy, the manager of the rapper Flo Rida, was ejected from the arena for apparently talking trash to or around the Indiana Pacers bench. It was a bizarre moment, to be sure, but also the sort of thing that happens sometimes at professional sporting events.

There was no indication that Freezy had become persona non grata at all Heat games. However, it now appears that he will not be able to attend either Game 6 or Game 7 of the NBA Finals at American Airlines Arena, apparently because San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich requested it. From Larry Brown Sports:

During an appearance on 104.3 The Ticket’s “Hochman and Zaslow Show” Tuesday morning, Freezy explained how the NBA contacted him and told him that he would be arrested if he tried to attend Game 6 on Tuesday night.

“They were sending me emails all week and kind threats but I was ignoring them,” he said. “Then I got emails and phone calls from their lawyers telling me I’m not allowed in the building for the next two games. So I’m like, ‘What violation did I (commit)’”

According to Freezy, San Antonio Spurs Head coach Gregg Popovich asked that his crew not be allowed back because they were getting too rowdy in support of the Heat.

“They were just telling me we had too much energy and the head coach complained about it,” Freezy claimed. “Them cats want an easy win. They ain’t used to that Miami Heat support right next to them in their ears.”

Freezy was also asked to leave the arena by the Indiana Pacers during the Eastern Conference Finals, but he said the Pacers were more disrespectful about it than the Spurs.

“The Spurs are just scared,” he explained. “They’re scared of the energy. The Pacers were disrespectful. The Spurs don’t want that building to erupt around them. What I do to cheer for my team is no different than what Spike Lee does in New York or Jack Nicholson does in LA.”

Freezy also put some extended thoughts on the matter on social media. The Instagram photo with his comments contains some NSFW language, so here's a clean version:

JUST GOT A CALL FROM THE NBA KINDLY ASKING ME NOT TO SHOW UP TO THE HEAT GAME TONIGHT!! SPURS HEAD COACH REPORTED ME TO THE NBA SAYING ITS TOO MUCH ENERGY NEAR THE TEAM!!!! THATS SOMEBULLS--- !!!!!

We have no way of knowing exactly what Flo Rida, Freezy, and Co. said near the Spurs bench, but if they really were just supporting their team and yelling in the manner we're accustomed to seeing from fans then this seems like an overreaction. While fans in the first few rows are typically not the most hyped-up people in the building, that doesn't mean they have a responsibility to keep quiet around the opposing bench. As Freezy says, Jack Nicholson and Spike Lee shout all the time. What's especially different here?

The other question, of course, is what Popovich said to get the NBA and Heat officials to bar Freezy from the premises. Because no one is going to reveal that information, we can only guess at the severity of his words. Perhaps he just asked the notoriously irascible Pop standard-issue sideline reporter questions to get on his bad side.

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