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Warriors’ Co-Owner Joe Lacob on the Wrong Side of Sports History; Boo’d Relentlessly at Chris Mullin’s Jersey Retirement

What started as a nostalgic journey down memory lane turned sour as soon as Warriors co-owner Joe Lacob grabbed the microphone.

The jersey retirement ceremony of Golden State Warriors legend Chris Mullin, at halftime of Monday’s game against Minnesota, was rolling along smoothly. Marked by funny stories, a video tribute and a rousing ovation for Mullin.

“This is where it all started for me as a pro,” Mullin said. “I came in as a young man. I made mistakes. I worked hard to redeem myself. And by the grace of God I am here today. I grew up right here in front of you. You, the Warrior fans, were a huge part of my success.”

But it was soon taken over by relentless boos at Lacob.

For several minutes, after Mullin gave his acceptance speech, Lacob was interrupted by a chorus of jeers and chants of “We Want Monta!” from fans. It was uncomfortable enough that Mullin got back up to encourage the fans to be patient with Lacob and the new ownership.

“Everything will work out just fine,” Mullin said, his arm around a clearly rattled Lacob. “Take that passion and point it in the right direction.”

When Mullin finished speaking, the fans cheered again. But as soon as Mullin sat down, and Lacob began to speak, the boos rang out again. And louder. That prompted Hall of Famer Rick Barry to get up and chastise the fans, calling the display “classless.”

Eventually, Lacob got through his speech and presented the Mullin family with a week vacation inMaui. After that, Mullin’s daughter led the unveiling of the jersey and the ceremony, finally, was complete.

The booing of Lacob will certainly go down as the most memorable part of Mullin’s retirement ceremony for everyone accept Mullin. He was all smiles

Mullin’s No. 17 is the sixth jersey retired in Warriors history – joining Barry (24), Wilt Chamberlain (13), Al Attles (16), Nate Thurmond (42) and Tom Meschery (14).

Several of Mullin’s former teammates – Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond, Sarunas Marciulionis,  Rod Higgins and Tom Tombert – were on hand for the retirement of his No. 17 jersey at halftime of Monday’s game vs.Minnesota. Even Mullin’s long-time coach, Don Nelson was in attendance wearing a tie.

“It’s my honor,” Mullin said, “to join the greats of this franchise and to be surrounded by my teammates, my coach. Although we never achieved the ultimate (by winning a) championship, I wouldn’t trade it for the people in this room.”

 

Marcus Thompson

  • http://www.ispithotfire.com Michael

    Lacob definitely didn’t deserve that. It was a good trade, and even if you disagree, the reasoning and motivations were good. It wasn’t to get rid of salary and just lost.

  • Niners in 2012

    Dear Joe Lacob,

    Don’t let what happened tonight reflect on ALL Warrior fans. We are not all this dumb, classless, and disrespectful. 19,000 fans may have booed you but I guarantee that there are 100,000s of Warrior fans around the world who support the trade and understand that it’s a move that needed to happen.

  • Byron Houston

    Lacob standing there waiting for the crowd to settle down got the ball (boo birds) rolling.
    I think the fans felt like he was demeaning them, by standing there waiting for them to be quiet.
    Not that I’m defending the fans because I thought that was embarrassing and classless.

  • Tblocks

    That was embarassing for Warrior fans. It was Mullins night, not a night to be classless. Agree or Disagree with the trade…it wasn’t like a Cohen move, always trying to save money, Lacob has done nothing but open up his wallet lately.

  • robert rowell

    fans are tired of losing. tired of empty ‘big things are here’ promises. just win and all that will e water under the bridge.

    that said the booing made me unfortable.

    EVERYBODY LOVE EVERYBODY

    let’s get Tropical.

  • Boooooooooo

    Michael that wasnt about the trade. This was about Lacob just not delivering but acting as if he knows basketball when almost all signs point to him not knowing anything more than us. Didn’t draft Monroe, traded Monta, release Lin (halfway through the first practice!!!), added salary, talked down to the fans. Just a sour time and he should never of followed up Mullin! Mullin was before him, back when he was a diehard Celtic fan, and should of just let Mullin finish it off and hoist the jersey. the lei’s, the music, it was just weird. Weird night

  • Derek

    Thats what happens when you let a scrub like Larry Riley ruin your business/team. I laughed but later felt sorry for the guy. He reminds me of Mitt Romney.

    The trade was moronic. Any idiot knows you can’t get better when utilizing the addition by subtraction formula. You build on what you have, you don’t continuosly blow-up and start over, thats a formula for losers. Moves like the Monta trade illustrate the difference between the Warriors org and the Lakers.

  • don

    wow… utterly classless. I know it was only some of them…but there were alot of them.

    the downward spiral continues.

  • Spencer

    How can an NBA owner a man that has made millions be unprepared to deal with boos. He looked like he was gonna cry and take the ball and go home. He couldve owned the situation and turned the crowd. What a big baby.

  • Judge Wapner

    I’m appalled by this disgusting news. I have a lot of pride in my home town, and the loyal fans who support Bay Area teams. Warrior fans have much to be frustrated about; but soiling a ceremony intended to honor the accomplishments of an NBA hall-of-famer is just what the legend himself called it; CLASSLESS.

    This behavior is the type of stuff that turn owners against their fans. These guys spend their life’s fortune buying the Warriors’ franchise with all the hopes and dreams held by its fans. They hired Jerry West to add credibility to an organization long known for futility and incompetence. And most recently, they pulled off a trade to land a top 5 center in the NBA.

    These guys want to win. They have their entire lives invested in this team. They are not sitting on their hands; they’re making aggressive moves to improve the franchise. Fans need to let them have their chance. Humiliating the owner who so obviously wants to bring pride and respectability to the Bay Area is deplorable. I’m honestly ashamed to be associated with such low class fans.

    Move the team to San Francisco. Maybe that will improve the demographic a little. Giants fans seem to show class no matter what. Raiders fans do not. You get my point….

    Oh, what a difference a few miles makes.

    ECJ

  • Mike

    They were booing over the Charlie Bell Amnesty, not Monta.

  • Eric

    For those of you that are ripping the trade of Monte, you obviously are not paying attention to what’s going on. Constantly vying for the 8th spot is not good basketball. Monte is a great player, but 1 dimensional. Even if we get worse, this deal will be better in the long run for the W’s.

    Those of you in attendance tonight booing showed a lot of immaturity and stupidity. That was Mullin’s night, not yours to take away. Complete fail by those fans.

  • Grey Warden

    If you were a STH who spent thousands of dollars to see the Warriors play, how would you feel if they threw away half the season trying to tank, on the promise of “Just wait till next year!” (Where have we heard that before? Oh right, pretty much every year). You’d feel like crap and on top of that, wasted thousands of dollars for nothing.

    Had Larry Riley not reduced the protections on the draft pick, the Warriors wouldn’t have to tank so badly in the first place. They could’ve kept the status quo and Warriors fans wouldn’t have booed (not as much as they did anyways). Oh and Riley’s still employed. By Lacob.

  • Grey Warden

    MT2′s tweet:

    “Joe Lacob can blame himself for that. You NEVER talk after the guest of honor. … He wanted that shine, that’s why he went last”

    —–

    I agree.

  • Downtown

    Derek, what about the Grizzlies and Sonics/Thunder? The Grizzlies traded away Pau, who was an immense talent and the face of the franchise since it moved from Vancouver. The Sonics traded Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis, both of whom were All-Stars, and had led the team to the playoffs.

  • marquee jackson

    Its not really Lacob. Its just us fans are just tired of loosing. Ticket prices have gone up consistently every year but the product on the court seem to be getting worse.

    Fans are frustrated.

  • Teagle

    The trade was good. With Monta and Curry we are treading water. The whole point of getting talent in such a way is to trade up. Small for big. There are only 3 ways to get a good big man 1) Be a big market like LA or Boston 2) Totally suck and get him in the draft [Spurs/Magic] and 3) Stockpile talent and make a trade for one.

    The ppl who booed are so short-sighted it’s sad.

  • vincent d.

    come on now warrior fans. this was mullins night and to jeer the lacob was classless. Despite how you feel about the owner save it for another time. this night was about mully and the joy he gave us when he left it out on the court for us to enjoy. it made him so uncomfortable he had to come out and defend lacob. i loved monte more than anyone but even he understood how the business goes and left with class. kudos to him and i hope he gets the respect and playoff play he deserves. thank you monte. life goes on and joe is making moves for the future. he is taking risks and making things happen, what do we have to lose. keep the faith warriors fans, i like the attitude, passion, dissent and uncompromising values, but remember we all have the same goal, including management. go warriors and thank you chris.

  • Ben

    I was at the game and was embarrassed by what my fellow “fans” did to Mully’s night. I really think most people who booed probably didn’t even know why they were doing it… a crowd mentality thing I guess. It’s also a completely unfortunate thing, because it ended up souring the night for Chris Mullin. Unreal. For the best fans in the NBA, this is hard to explain.

  • Spencer

    MTs tweet was perfect.

  • Lavalovers

    I was yelling at the tv tonight. Joe did NOT deserve that. That was a great trade and he has done nothing but try to better the franchise. That was embarrassing, joe I’m with you, great moves last week. RJ was a steal. He’s our leader now.
    MR LACOB thank you .

  • Gengiskhan

    Joe Lacob – sorry for the bad behavior from the fans

  • dan

    it was classless but Lacob should keep his mouth shut fron now on. Stop boasting about hitting a home run.

  • peter koulias

    The act was classless but the fans understand what type of player monta ellis is. They couldve easily traded curry and got bogut due to the fact brandon jennings doesnt want to stay in Milwaukee. Ekpe udoh was in his second year and just got starting minutes and looked promising. i understand monta is small but he was a true warrior like mullins. And i disagree bogut in my opinion isnt a top ten center. dwight, al horford, nene, tyson, pekovic,bynum duncan, hibbert are all better centers than bogut. remember he was a 1st overall pick that hasnt proven anything. bad trade no doubt the warriors iost ekpe was promising. with ersan ilyasova and gooden playing great who needs bogut. maybe this will wake up joe lacob and make him realize this was probably his worst business deal ever as a profesional ever.

  • thegunslinger

    Understandable reaction considering the many tough seasons over and over, however that’s not the way to do it, if you aren’t happy don’t pay to come out…
    As far as the trade is concerned, there are way too many armchair GM’s that are so clueless, letting their current emotions take over. Anytime you can trade a small for a big its a no-brainer.

    Ok, Monta is a talented player who can score but so can numerous other guards with that size, how many proven talented big men come around that you can build around? This team is changing for the better…believe it!

  • Jay

    Anyone that booed Lacob tonight should have been ashamed for cheapening an event that was supposed to be a celebration. While Lacob may have been asking for it (I didn’t think so IMO) after all that happened last week, it was not the place to protest, out of respect for the man of honor. Those fans were truly classless.

  • Rich Olmstead

    Tonight’s fan behavior was truly shocking. Mr. Lacob, I’m so sorry. Keep the faith buddy!

  • Damon

    It was an emotional, honest response, right or wrong.
    The ownership group knows what they gotta do.
    Win baby!

    I love Monta and totally support the trade,
    Bogut really is a 7 foot Center, we could
    really use one of those.
    Jefferson looks better than I though he would.
    Interesting…

  • Animal

    For those saying it was classless, you are clueless. These are the die hards of die hards, people who have been fans forever. When else do fans have a true opportunity to express themselves to a national audience? Lacob should not have spoken so soon after another painful trade. These are real people with real emotions.

  • gizzm

    Rick Barry was hilarious. Chris Mullin was classy. And Joe Lacob looked like he chit his pants. Wow.

  • zeelurker

    As long-time frustrated Warriors fan, I don’t think Joe Lacob deserved to booed. Although things have been far from perfect during the short time Lacob has owned the team, he has shown a willingness to spend money to improve both the roster and management, unlike his tight wad predecessor, Cohan, who continued to allow his lap dog Robert Rowell to run the team into the ground season after season. I think the only things Lacob can be criticized for are 1. Not immediately cleaning house after he purchased the team (though he did finally fire Rowell) 2. Larry Riley should still be replaced. 3. Fitzmelonhead needs to go.

  • WorriedWarrior

    What the heeck was he doing speaking AFTER Mullin?!? Or at all!?!? Personally I didn’t boo out of respect for Chris but Lacob was asking for it. Only time an owner needs to make a speech in a spotlight is after he’s won a title. Lacob wanted the attention at center stage on a night that wasn’t his own and he got what he deserved.

    Night would’ve been perfect if Joe had just stayed out of it. Mullin speaks, Papa wraps it up, daughter does the banner. Fin.

  • Loyal gsfan

    Shocking & disturbing to watch that totally unnecessary display of rudeness which brought an otherwise great ceremony down. Even if you’ve spent thousands on your tickets, booing incessantly is disrespectful. You’ve lost your respect for dignity when you bring out that behavior during a ceremony of that circumstance.

    Lacob did not need to be involved in he hosting of the event but I do believe he does crave the limelight. Joe, Don’t become a hermit like the last owner, but you don’t need to be the face of the franchise either.

  • Richard

    Welcome to the NBA, Joe.

  • SmartnotStupid

    GreyWarden,Spencer and Derek,

    I have two things to say to the three of you:

    1. You are not basketball savvy and you have no knowledge of what it takes to dig the Warriors out of the deep hole that was dug by the last regime.

    2. You don’t understand respect and dignity and are total asses.

  • Greg

    Lacob did not deserve to get booed, the fans that were there should have realized that the night was for Mullin and just bit their tounge. I love Monta as much as any Warrior fan, but EVERYONE knew he was gonna get traded! Even Monta knew and handled it with class, despite finding out by seeing it on tv. I was pissed when they traded him but Riley did say it right, we were always gonna be a .500 team with Steph and Monta and its not like we could added a true “big-man” with the salary cap space we have.

    Really looked classless and the fans that were there tonight should feel bad for making us look bad! Rick Barry should just shut up!

  • KaliKomplex

    Accept/Except #Tricky

  • snarkk

    Lacob deserves to be ripped for some of the moves so far. This organization has been crap for decades, and still is, that’s not news to anyone. So, NOW, during Mullie’s ceremony, a lot of the fans decide to show they’re PO’d because of Monta, or of the past decades, or of the noise about moving to SF? NOW you’re going to say you’re PO’d? Totally classless move, and a huge embarrassment for Mullin and all the other players there with retired numbers. Show that you’re PO’d by NOT buying tickets, not buying the beers, the souvies. Cancel your season tix for next year. But, wrecking Mullie’s night? You feel better now that Mullin had to come out and shut you up? Rick is often a tool, but he was right to have the sack to call out the fans tonight for their low class tirade. Fan buffoonery of the highest order…

  • Ewok

    Mob rule is what you call it. Sponataneous reaction is what you call it in Sociology. This reminds me of the crowd during the Pacquiao-Marquez fight where the crowd was trying to influence the outcome by implying malice on the officials even though Pacquiao won by statistics as evidenced by Marquez beat up face.

    “The Majority is not always right”

    As a matter of fact and a long time ago, There was a Man who was crucified by a people with the same behavior.

    Stick to the plan Mr. Lacob. This boos will turn around soon.

  • JM95054

    Fans paid a lot of money over the years. They only had one NBA allstar in the past 15 yrs and 1 post season appearance. They have seen the W’s let our best players go for future prospects that never turned out. How about Mitch Richmond for Billy Owens. Just a small example there. They have every effin right to let the owner know that the dumb crap stuff like trading your best player away has got to stop.

  • Dub

    He made it worse by pausing like a kindergarten teacher waiting for the kids to settle down…if he had just said his congrats and introduced the mullin daughter then he would have skated thru it…but the fans were atrocious…

  • Spencer

    lol indeed.

  • Grey Warden

    #35 StupidnotSmart,

    Lacob shouldn’t have went on after the guest of honor. Simple as that. Talk about disrespect. But he wanted the spotlight. He was asking for it. And Larry Riley’s still the GM. Another reason to boo him.

  • Go Big or Go Home

    Geeeze…did the Warriors require all of their employees to come on here, and call the fans classless??? Just b/c Rick Barry said it, it doesn’t mean it is true. The only CLASSLESS group out there, is Warriors Management, who didn’t even contact Monta or his Agent to let him know he was traded. Had to read it on the Sportscenter Bottom Line. Terrible. Giving up 2 good players in that trade was a joke…shows that management doesn’t know how to properly negotiate. We will BOOOOOOOO Lacob until he figures it out. Until then, we will continue to let him have it. So, GET OVER IT!!!

  • Jay

    Does anyone really think that if Lacob had gone on before Mullin, that he’d not receive the same treatment? The short-sighted fan was going to express their feelings no matter when Lacob went on. I agree that Lacob probably didn’t need to go on and tell Mullin he was sending his family to Maui, but don’t use that as a reason for booing him.

  • John Starks

    Truly putrid and tasteless by the fans. Sickening. There are a number of words to describe their behavior last night, and none of them are pleasant.

    I’ve never been before but now I’m ashamed of the Warrior fans. That episode made us look like idiots.

    I’m proud to say I didn’t boo. I was in the stands defending Lacob.

  • Derek

    #12 Monta NEVER had quality team mates, specifically a center to play with. Management consistently failed to put together a balanced roster (this year included). Larry Riley consistently passed on great pieces, while simultaneously trading or releasing critical pieces/players, getting virtually noting in return.

    Remember; Wade before Shaq and/or Lebron. Paul Pierce before Garnett and Allen. Stars need adequate team mates and a balanced roster

  • Derek

    #15 The Griz traded Gasol for his brother, then drafted well and traded for Z. Randolph. How does that compare to the Warriors, who continually draft what they already have and make pathetic one sided trades. The Sonics aka OKC were broke and couldn’t pay free agents R. Lewis (who is now overpaid), they got rid of Allen because they thought he was getting old and over priced. Conversely they drafted well, can you say westbrook and duran and their GM created a balanced roster unlike Riley.

  • Derek

    #35 You’re an opinionated PC wimp. You also appear to know nothing about basketball and proper team management. 20 yrs of consecutive failure and you feel all is well.

    Buy a clue pal !

    Management blows up an incomplete team still in contention vs. finding the missing piece(s), rebuilding for the who knows how many times. Being the Chicago Cubs of basketball.

    You may find it uplifting, but I don’t.

  • peter koulias

    the trade was stupid they could of traded curry for bogut bc jennings doesnt want to stay in milwaukee. bogut is not a top five center yea he gets boards but who doesnt that is 7ft. udoh was starting to play good and at first i felt bad but lacob did try to steal the spotlight when he was never part of mullins era in golden state. but now i dont feel that bad bc lacob will soon realize how much he screwed up. his own fiance didnt talk to him for 3 days after the trade. she even knows how dumb it was lolol…..can someone please agree that udoh was looking promising? i was excited for him.

  • Ewok

    Ordinary Fans are very subjective. Real Basketball Fans are objective, patient, and relies on foresight.

    Why so quick to judge when we have yet to see if Bogut is a dud? The thing about it however, is Bogut is legitimate. The missing piece in the team. As special as Monta is, the truth of the matter is, there is always a player like him in every draft. What if we decide to get jeremy lamb for his position.

  • MWLX

    For those of you who weren’t there, 19,000 fans did not boo Joe Lacob. It was more like a few thousand, while 15,000-plus others were powerless to do anything about it.

    On one hand, the boo-birds are paying customers, they were angry, and they have every right to express themselves loudly in that venue. On the other hand, timing is everything, and the timing was bad, overshadowing what should have been a feel-good ceremony for Chris Mullin. That’s what I regret most.

    The media will now keep it alive for days and months because they love controversy. Count on it.

  • Derek

    #51 If Bogut is such a difference maker or legit why has he never made the Bucks a decent team. The guy can’t even make the all star team in the east.

    The W’s currently have NO superstar a couple of above average types the rest being average or below average. No elite or decent team has a roster comparible (worse) than the Warriors.

  • Angrygswfan

    Dude promised us the playoffs and then makes a trade for an injured center thats never played a whole season and is out for the rest of the season….why wouldnt he get booed?