Starting off the season 1-18 was not how Jahlil Okafor pictured the start of his professional career, but the bad news just keeps piling up for the third overall pick of this year’s draft.
Bad to worse
Just hours after TMZ sports released new footage of Okafor's weekend brawl in Boston, ESPN reported that the Philadelphia 76ers had officially suspended the rookie center for two games, starting immediately.
Boston police are looking back into the case and have told TMZ sports that charges will most likely be filed following the release of the second video.
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Also the 27-year-old man, who remains nameless of course, has told TMZ that he is looking into bringing about a lawsuit after the incident.
The man’s lawyer also told TMZ Sports:
“"Should we be unable to reach an agreement [with Jahlil], civil litigation is the only available option."
Most likely this case will be settled out of court and the man could end up with a significant financial package to accompany the ten stitches he required.
The suspension comes at no surprise after two videos leaked from the past weekend, showing Okafor get into an altercation with a heckling fan outside a set of bars in Boston.
A tough lesson for the young center, but he is going to have to learn how to handle these types of situations.
Sure everyone wants to go Metta World Peace on a heckler, (world peace one punch at a time) but that is playing into their hands.
Okafor isn’t the first, nor will he be the last, young talent to get into trouble because of off-duty altercations but that doesn’t have to be the norm.
After this all blows over, Okafor will come away with a valuable lesson and I feel that he will continue to shine in the NBA, whether he does that with the 76ers who can say.
The 76ers are handling the situation as expected by suspending Okafor and also providing team protection, in the form of a bodyguard. Now if they can only provide protection to their season, Okafor may have less trouble with disdained fans.