UPDATED: Imaginary guns, real issues

By J.A. Adande

*When I wrote this blog post earlier in the day I thought Gilbert Arena's mock gunplay before the 76ers game might add to the severity of David Stern's punishment. Instead it changed the timing.

Stern was willing to follow his standard m.o. and let the legal process play itself out before suspending Arenas. But Arenas unleashed a torrent of tweets, which started off disputing New York Post NBA writer Peter Vecsey's story about the locker room incident with Javaris Crittenton, and veered into some off-color jokes and then plunged into the deep end. Then came the moment I described below, which I'm told was the final straw. Clearly, these antics fell under the category of "too soon." It was referenced specifically by the Wizards in their statement, and it's clearly what Stern was talking about when he referenced "ongoing conduct" when he decided to suspend Arenas indefinitely.*

Gilbert Arenas didn't help his case with David Stern when he formed play guns with his thumbs and index fingers and fired away during the Wizards' pregame introductions in Philadelphia on Tuesday night, as captured in this picture. Clearly his teammates were in on the joke, as they're all laughing. But they're not the ones who will have to face Stern's wrath for violating his ban on guns in NBA territory.

And Stern takes everything into consideration, even pregame routines. Remember when Matt Barnes performed a weapons-check patting down of Stephen Jackson during the Golden State Warriors' 2007 playoff games, six months after Jackson fired a gun outside an Indianapolis strip club? That came to a halt after Stern sent word to knock it off. David Stern doesn't play.