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Police in brief standoff on Staples Center court

A man with a knife on the arena floor of Staples Center prompted an hour-long standoff with police on Saturday. (Kirby Lynum)
March 19, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
A man with a knife on the arena floor of Staples Center prompted an hour-long standoff with police before the Los Angeles Clippers hosted the Cleveland Cavaliers Saturday afternoon.

About 25 arena security guards surrounded the man when he was spotted walking onto the court with a knife.

The man eventually made his way to the visiting bench and remained in front of it while talking to three Los Angeles police officers who had their guns drawn on him from different angles.

Police tackled and detained the man at 11:20 a.m. after he made a move toward a tunnel leading off the court. He was placed in handcuffs and escorted out of the area by police.

The court was reopened to players, media and arena employees 18 minutes later.

Some spectators for the 12:30 p.m. game had begun filing into the arena, but were evacuated once the standoff started. Players from both teams watched the drama unfold on a small TV monitor outside the Cavaliers' dressing room before they were instructed to return to their locker rooms.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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