Already saddled with the NBA's worst record at 0-16, the Philadelphia 76ers were facing more embarrassment after a video surfaced purporting to show rookie center Jahlil Okafor punching a man outside a Boston bar early Thursday.
The video, which was first published by TMZ.com, shows Okafor yelling, "We got money, you broke-[expletive] n-----s" in response to a remark from a heckler, who reportedly yelled "The 76ers suck."
The video skips ahead and shows Okafor pushing a man to the ground despite attempts to restrain him, then throwing a punch with a right hand that knocked the man down.
TMZ said a representative for Okafor told the website that he had been heckled from the moment he left the bar and was feeling threatened. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that rookie power forward Christian Wood was also at the bar with Okafor, though it's not clear to what extent he was involved in the melee.
A Sixers spokesman said the club was "aware of the report, and we are currently working to gather additional information. Until that time, we will have no further comment."
Boston Police spokeswoman Rachel McGuire told the Inquirer that police had received a call from an unknown woman at around 2 a.m. local time. McGuire said the woman provided the bar's name and address, but by the time officers arrived, "there was no one there."
Earlier Wednesday evening, the Sixers had lost to the Boston Celtics, 84-80, blowing a fourth-quarter lead in the process. Okafor, who helped lead the Duke Blue Devils to a national championship this past April, was drafted with the third overall pick in June and has averaged 18.4 points and 8.1 rebounds in 33.4 minutes per game.