A tense scene unfolded at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia on Thursday, when Lakers forward Carmelo Anthony approached a couple of fans who he said were heckling him.
The incident went down about midway through the fourth quarter of the Sixers' lopsided win over Los Angeles.
With about 7 minutes left in the game, cameras caught Anthony striding toward the sideline at around half court during a dead ball. He started bickering with at least two fans who appeared to be sat in the second row, until his teammates and the referees came between them.
The game was carried by TNT, with broadcast announcer Ian Eagle noting the fans had been "riding" Anthony for several possessions prior to the incident.
A Sixers spokesperson confirmed one of the fans was ejected, ESPN reported.
After the game, Anthony said he is usually fine with a little jeering, but he took exception to the fan calling him "boy."
"Some things were said," Anthony said. "Unacceptable. I'm cool with fans heckling, fans talking trash, cheering for their team, booing the other team, I'm all for that. But when you cross certain lines, as a man, you just, that's what you're going to see. That's what you're going to get, as you saw there."
Sixers star center Joel Embiid was among those who came between Anthony and the fans. He said he noticed the nasty exchanges, and he just wanted to defuse the situation.
"I was just trying to calm the situation because they were just going back and forth, and I really wanted to just go home and finish the game," Embiid said. "So, yes, that's what I wanted, to calm the situation down so we could play and move on."
The regrettable episode isn't the first involving an unruly Sixers fan. Last season, the Sixers banned a season-ticket holder for life after he was seen dumping a bucket of popcorn on the head of then-Wizards guard Russell Westbrook.
Westbrook, now with the Lakers, said the fans on Thursday night may have "crossed the line."
Anthony said he harbors no ill toward Sixers fans as a whole, and he considers Philly one of his favorite places to play.
"You play through the heckles. But that's all fun and games," he said. "I mean, I've been doing that for 19, 20 years. Especially playing here, it's been a great place to come in and play. And fans, I know how the fans are here."