The Instagram video above, shot by a New York comedian named Jesse Eigner (jeigs), says it all.
If you've been to a Nets game at the Barclays Center, you probably know Jeffrey Gamblero. He is the guy in the Nets' jersey, wearing neon usually, and glasses dancing around the lower level of the stadium. He is a positive influence on the game and is well received by most of the people attending the game. Well, clearly Madison Square Garden wasn't to happy to see Gamblero get excited about his beloved Nets playing well. A person named Max was near by the incident and told The Brooklyn Game what happened.
UPDATE: A fan named Max was sitting behind Gamblero. Here’s his first-hand account of the situation (all typos/errors are [sic]):
(Gamblero) was being his usual self, absolutely no cursing, no negative cheering, just dancing and loud cheering for the Nets. Never attacked a Knicks fan, never got out of hand.
After halftime a guard came up and told him to "cool down and just be a fan." Obviously didn’t know who he was. He said what did I do wrong? Should I be quiet? They said no, just cool it down. He started loudly cheering FOR the Knicks doing "go New York go New York go," etc. The guards came back and told him to stop. He said why? Is this a library?
Then the main guard on the floor gave the signal to kick him out. He would not leave. A guard then touched his leg and he said "ouch you’re hurting me I have a prosthetic leg." He then took off the leg, which is when things escalated.
More and more guards surrounded him as he watched the game with his leg resting on his shoulder. They tried to get him to put his leg on, threatened to arrest him if he wouldn’t, but he wasn’t moving. He started saying "why are you doing this I just love basketball so much," he was clearly overwhelmed. After about ten minutes, four guards grabbed him and carried him out as he screamed in pain. I am a lifelong Nets fan but regardless, this was one of the cruelest and most upsetting things I have ever seen.
A Nets fan with an overhead view told NetsDaily how it began...
@NetsDaily we are directly above where he was. Security came over It seemed like it had something to do with him dancing in aisles.— Christopher John (@PsychoNetsFan) December 3, 2014
@ReedWallach Thing is the fans around him Nets and Knickschanted let him stay. The loud boos heard were for him being dragged out.Very weird— Christopher John (@PsychoNetsFan) December 3, 2014
Mitch Abramson of the Daily News noted that it appeared the guards also didn't do a very good job removing Gamblero. "At one point in the video, as several security guards carry him out, they appear to drop him as the video ends."
Various fans commented on Twitter, most of them with second hand reports, but one eyewitness suggested MSG guards blew this one out of proportion.
@KennyDucey I was a few rows behind him. No one near saw him swing his leg at anyone. He was just being loud.— +1 (@plusonemusic) December 3, 2014
@KennyDucey the whole section was chanting "let him stay" & security patiently talked to him for a few minutes before carrying him out.— +1 (@plusonemusic) December 3, 2014
A Knicks official offered an official comment on the issue.
— Alex Raskin (@alexraskinNYC) December 3, 2014
Alan Anderson, interviewed post game, was shocked by what he witnessed...
"I just looked up and saw what happened, that he was carried out. I don’t know what caused it. I know he’s a big fan for us, though."
When told that when Gamblero was carried off did not have his prosthetic limb on, Anderson looked up, incredulous.
"For real? Who took it off," he said.
The Nets and Knicks next play February 6 at Barclays Center.