Celtics fan accused of throwing bottle at Nets’ Kyrie Irving to appear in court

BOSTON, MASS (WCVB) – A Celtics fan accused of throwing a water bottle at Brooklyn Nets’ Kyrie Irving at the TD Garden is due in court Wednesday.

As Irving walked off the court Sunday following Brooklyn’s 141-126 victory over the Celtics, he was nearly hit by a bottle thrown from the stands. Irving and Nets guard Tyler Johnson turned toward the stands and pointed. Police surrounded a man in a Kevin Garnett jersey in the stands before leading him out in handcuffs.

Cole Buckley, 21, of Braintree, is charged with one count of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

According to police, a witness who works security at TD Garden reported that Buckley was seen throwing the Dasani water bottle that grazed Irving’s head and that there is video of the incident. Brooklyn Nets security personnel also reported seeing the incident.

Post game, Irving said players can be treated like they’re in a human zoo and said it can get to be too much.

“(It’s) just underlying racism, and treating people like they’re in a human zoo,” Irving said.

“Throwing stuff at people, saying things. There’s a certain point where it gets to be too much,” said the Nets guard, who spent two years playing in Boston and revealed last week he was the victim of racism during his time in the city. “You see people just feel very entitled out here. … As a Black man playing in the NBA, dealing with a lot of this stuff, it’s fairly difficult. You never know what’s going to happen.”

Irving had 39 points and 11 rebounds to quiet the first post-pandemic full house at the TD Garden and lead the Nets to victory in Game 4 of their first-round playoff series. The win gave Brooklyn a 3-1 lead and a chance to clinch at home on Tuesday.

After the game, Marcus Smart condemned that fan’s actions, but praised the quick arrest and said about Celtics fans that “one bad seed doesn’t mean the whole fruit is poisoned.”

TD Garden released a statement saying in part, “We have zero tolerance for violations of our guest code of conduct, and the guest is subject to a lifetime ban from TD Garden.”

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