A new video has emerged of an altercation between Alameda County sheriff’s deputy Alan Strickland and Toronto Raptors president of basketball operations Masai Ujiri, which reveals the officer to be the aggressor in an incident that occurred directly after Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals.
Ujiri made his way towards the court to join the Raptors for the customary on-court championship celebration, where his team would receive the Larry O’Brien Trophy, while Kawhi Leonard received his award for winning NBA Finals MVP.
KTVU FOX 2, based out of the Bay Area, obtained new video footage, which reveals Strickland to be the initial aggressor in the altercation.
Ujiri’s legal team also released video of the body camera footage, as obtained by Diamond Leung of The Athletic.
Masai Ujiri's legal team has released body camera footage of his encounter with a security worker at Oracle Arena after the Raptors won the NBA championship. pic.twitter.com/56XWMpZy0P— Diamond Leung (@diamond83) August 19, 2020
Attorneys representing Ujiri stated Strickland was “undeniably the initial aggressor,” according to KTVU.
In the video, Ujiri makes his way past a host of fans, a security guard and other credentialed members on his way to the Oracle Arena floor. Strickland sees Ujiri coming, points at him, and as Ujiri holds out his credential, the sheriff’s deputy shoves the Raptors’ president.
After the first shove, Strickland and Ujiri exchanged words, before the latter held out his credential once again, in an attempt to access the floor. This time, Strickland pushes Ujiri back with more force, and Ujiri shoved Strickland back.
Strickland, who had to be restrained by bystanders and other credentialed members, tries to get other security personnel involved, before Ujiri is ushered onto the court without further incident.
No criminal charges were ever filed against Ujiri, with prosecutors dismissing the possibility in October 2019.
Strickland hasn’t returned to work since getting involved in the altercation with Ujiri and filed a lawsuit against the Raptors’ president in a Northern California district court, claiming that he incurred injuries that “caused and continue to cause great mental, physical, emotional and psychological pain and suffering” as a result.
Ujiri called the lawsuit ‘malicious’ and the Raptors vehemently refuted Strickland’s account of the incident.
The Raptors also released the following statement:
Raptors spokesperson on release of video footage involving team president Masai Ujiri and a Bay Area police officer in moments after end of 2019 NBA Finals: pic.twitter.com/sPq6y1tbw5— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 19, 2020
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