Luka Doncic May 18, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) participates in a press conference after game one of the 2022 western conference finals against the Golden State Warriors at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Luka Dončić had a heckling fan ejected from the arena during the Dallas Mavericks blowout loss against the Phoenix Suns Wednesday night and it led to a heated exchange with an ESPN reporter.

In the third quarter of the game, ESPN’s Tim MacMahon tweeted a video of a Suns fan leaving Dallas’ American Airlines Center, claiming Dončić asked security to have the person removed from the arena for saying, “Luka, you’re tired! Get your a– on the treadmill.”

The tweet appeared to irk Dončić just as much as the heckling did, with the Mavericks superstar later accusing MacMahon of attempting to make him look bad.

“That wasn’t the only thing he [the fan], said,” Dončić claimed to MacMahon while declining to repeat anything else the fan said during the game. “But I knew you would be the first one to put out something like that. I just saw it and it’s just funny, you always seem to be the first one to put out bad stuff about me.”

MacMahon pushed back, stating 99 percent of what he writes about Dončić is positive, but noted he was sitting near the ejected fan. When Dončić asked if the treadmill exchange was the first time MacMahon heard the heckling fan Wednesday night, the ESPN reporter said, “That was the one you reacted to. He was definitely hollering all game.”

The cardio quip may have been the last straw, but Dončić insisted he was being cursed out by the Suns fan the “whole first half.” When asked why he didn’t have the fan removed from the arena during the first half, Dončić said he would never, even though he just did.

“I never would eject a fan. They paid for tickets, but I had enough. It’s a little bit of frustration,” Dončić said.

The Mavericks superstar would never have a paying fan ejected from an NBA game, until they start talking about cardio and treadmills. That’s a surprising line of demarcation to establish, but it’s hard to criticize Dončić too much without knowing what else was said.

99 percent of what MacMahon writes about Dončić probably is positive, because there haven’t been too many opportunities to criticize the 24-year-old superstar. Although Dončić didn’t appreciate MacMahon reporting on the possibility that he might request a trade from the Mavericks last season.

But MacMahon already isn’t a very popular figure within the Mavericks community. In 2016, the ESPN reporter briefly had his credentials revoked by Mark Cuban. And earlier this season, MacMahon was ripped by Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd for being too negative in his coverage of the team. Apparently, reporting about a fan making a treadmill joke wasn’t positive enough for Dončić.

[Tim MacMahon]

About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to