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Midway through the fourth quarter of Wednesday's Game 2 between the Knicks and the Hawks in New York, a Knicks fan was caught on the broadcast appearing to spit towards the Hawks' 22-year-old star Young - prompting the famous basketball franchise to announce that the fan, who isn't a season ticket holder, has been scrubbed from any future Knicks games in the arena until further notice.
Young referenced the matter both online and in the post-game press conference, at which he said that despite the run-in with the supporter it was great to compete in front of a fans once again - and said that the Knicks fan who supposedly spat at him proves that he "must be doing something right".
"I’m glad fans are back, MSG was rocking tonight, and I’m glad everyone got to experience it, I definitely know the history of players coming in here and being hated, and I take that as a compliment, to be honest with you," said Young after the game, which the Knicks won by a score of 101-92.
"I’m obviously doing something right if you hate me this much. I just embrace it and focus on helping my team get the win. At the end of the day, we’ll get the last laugh, if we do that."
Noting the matter on Twitter, Young said that the incident was "crazy" and also asked rapper 50 Cent, who was sitting court-side and appeared to be in the firing line of the expectorate, if he was "good".
As the spitting episode gained steam online, the Knicks PR team sprang into action and identified the fan - and quickly made a statement to declare that they had punished him.
"We investigated the matter and determined that this patron, who is not a season ticket holder, did indeed spit on Trae Young, and for that reason, he is now banned from The Garden indefinitely," the team said.
"We apologize to Trae and the entire Atlanta Hawks organization for this fan's behavior. This was completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated in our venue. We have turned the information over to the appropriate authorities."
Incredibly, this was the second such clash between a fan and a player to take place in the NBA on Wednesday evening after Washington Wizards star Russell Westbrook reacted furiously when a supporter dunked a container of popcorn over him as he was being led down the player's tunnel after apparently injuring his ankle.
Knicks’ Fan Caught Spitting On Trae Young