Philly fans can be loud, just as a general rule. But when you give them something worth cheering about — and the arrival of James Harden on the Sixers certainly qualifies — the decibel level reached at places like the Wells Fargo Center can make it feel like the roof is about to blow off. Like Spinal Tap, their volume knob also goes up to 11.
And for those in the arena, that can become hazardous. But maybe not for the reason you think.
Sure, loud noises (did you also read that like Brick Tamland from “Anchorman,” as intended?) can be harmful to a person’s ears, but apparently so too can be the lengths to which people will go to get a reprieve from the sound. Just ask former Sixers guard JJ Redick, who was on hand for Harden’s Philly debut on Wednesday night as ESPN’s color analyst.
I’m no doctor, but that can’t be safe, right? The simple fact that it made Redick’s ears burn would suggest that. Did no one have a dry paper towel or napkin that he could use instead? And how did Redick, 37, who played 75 games at the Wells Fargo Center in his two seasons here, not know what he was walking into, especially with Harden making his first appearance in front of the home crowd.
It’s safe to assume the new broadcaster won’t make that mistake again.
Redick won’t be in attendance when the Sixers return to the Wells Fargo Center court on Friday night against the Cavaliers for the first half of a back-to-back, with the second game coming Saturday in Miami, as the team prepares for a tough stretch of games against some of the Eastern Conference’s best teams.
UPDATE [4:07 p.m.] — Redick was kind enough to reply on Twitter and explain exactly how that sanitizing wipe wound up in his ear.
Desperate times. Also, can someone check on that camera guy?