Kobe Bryant Hub




David Stern: Openly Gay NBA Player Inevitable

You may recall that NBA Commissioner David Stern issued this firm statement on Wednesday following Kobe Bryant's now infamous use of an anti-gay slur during a LA Lakers game this week:

Stern “Kobe Bryant’s comment during last night’s game was offensive and inexcusable. While I’m fully aware that basketball is an emotional game, such a distasteful term should never be tolerated. Accordingly, I have fined Kobe $100,000. Kobe and everyone associated with the NBA know that insensitive or derogatory comments are not acceptable and have no place in our game or society.”

ESPN's True Hoop blog reports on some of the things related to the overall attitude related to gays and lesbians in the NBA during yesterday's the league's Board of Governor's meeting:

"I think that left unresponded to, statements like [Bryant's] could lead to a hostile work environment, and we're not going to have it."

What he thinks about the possibility of an openly gay play in the NBA:

"I think it's ... I don't want to become a social crusader on this issue but I think sports, male sports, has traditionally not been an inviting environment for gay men to identify themselves. But eventually ... we will get to a place where it is not an issue in sports...It's going to be hard, but it'll happen, I have no doubt about it."

Stern was a guest on the Mike & Mike show and had this to say when asked about the reaction he's heard thus far to the fine the league issued to Bryant: "From the groups that are most sensitive on this subject, various alliances supporting greater sensitivity to the rights of gays, lesbians transgenders, they very much appreciated the recognition that these kinds of slurs have to be taken with the same seriousness as other slurs."

Watch that interview, AFTER THE JUMP.

Continue reading "David Stern: Openly Gay NBA Player Inevitable" »


Former NBA Player John Amaechi on Kobe Bryant's Anti-Gay Slur: 'Saying You Didn't Mean it is Not the Answer'

Former NBA player John Amaechi, who came out in 2007 after he retired, talks to USA Today about Kobe Bryant's recent slur, as well as his follow-up statement:

Amaechi-headshot I suppose that's the typical, "I apologize if you're offended" type of comment. I doubt very much when he said that that he thought Bennie was a pile of sticks. There's only one contemporary meaning for that.

The problem we have now is because of the way we don't address homophobia, the ultimate insult to a man is to tell them either they're like a woman or worse, that they're gay.

We have to take it as unacceptable as a white person screaming the N-word at a black person. … I can tell you that I've been called a f——- fairly routinely, and yet people seem to hold off on calling me the N-word. We've got to mirror that progress.

Amaechi said that while he agrees with the fine imposed (which Kobe is appealing), what he'd really like to see Kobe do is make a difference:

I'm not interested in seeing Kobe punished. What I'm interested in is if you're really sorry, that this is a one-off mistake for you, use the power you have to make a difference. That means a proper apology and doing something with his brand. Good Lord, he's got the power with one executive decision to get people moving and do something good here. Do something good.

I've said this before and I know people think it's hyperbole, but especially in America, people look at sports stars like their gods. I keep saying every time, "If sports stars are gods it's time we see a miracle every once in a while." This is an opportunity for that.

...what I would want is to encourage Kobe to use the power he has to really make an apology that means something. Tell black men, men in general in America, that resorting to that sort of language is the lowest of the low and is unacceptable. And it doesn't make you any more of a man. That's really the answer. Saying you didn't mean it is not the answer.

Much more interview at USA Today...


NBA Commissioner Fines Kobe Bryant $100,000 for Anti-Gay Slur

Kobe

NBA Commissioner David Stern issued the following statement this afternoon:

“Kobe Bryant’s comment during last night’s game was offensive and inexcusable. While I’m fully aware that basketball is an emotional game, such a distasteful term should never be tolerated. Accordingly, I have fined Kobe $100,000. Kobe and everyone associated with the NBA know that insensitive or derogatory comments are not acceptable and have no place in our game or society.”

Previously...
Kobe Bryant Statement on 'Fag' Slur: 'I Didn't Mean to Offend Anyone' [tr]
Watch: Kobe Bryant Calls Ref a 'F**king Fag' After Technical Foul [tr]


Kobe Bryant Statement on 'Fag' Slur: 'I Didn't Mean to Offend Anyone'

Kobe

The L.A. Lakers spoke with GLAAD this morning and released a statement from Kobe Bryant regarding the anti-gay slur captured on camera during his game last night.

Said Bryant:

“What I said last night should not be taken literally. My actions were out of frustration during the heat of the game, period. The words expressed do NOT reflect my feelings towards the gay and lesbian communities and were NOT meant to offend anyone.”

Bryant's slur is under review by the NBA.

Previously...
Watch: Kobe Bryant Calls Ref a 'F**king Fag' After Technical Foul [tr]


Watch: Kobe Bryant Calls Ref a 'F**king Fag' After Technical Foul

Kobe

Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant was seen calling referee Bennie Adams a "f**king fag" during Tuesday night's game after he was handed his fourth foul.

Watch (at about :30 in), AFTER THE JUMP..

UPDATE. HRC via TMZ: "What a disgrace for Kobe Bryant to use such horribly offensive and distasteful language, especially when millions of people are watching. Hopefully Mr. Bryant will recognize that as a person with such fame and influence, the use of such language not only offends millions of LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender] people around the world, but also perpetuates a culture of discrimination and hate that all of us, most notably Mr. Bryant, should be working to eradicate."

Continue reading "Watch: Kobe Bryant Calls Ref a 'F**king Fag' After Technical Foul" »


Who Wore Short Shorts? Kobe Bryant and the Lakers

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As an honor to hall-of-famer Jerry West, the Los Angeles Lakers wore vintage uniforms in the first half of their game against the Celtics on Sunday night. In question was what psychological effect the fashion switch may have had on the score, as the Lakers lost to the Celtics 110-91. Most Lakers appeared intent on covering the thighs with some longer spandex leggings.

Celtics coach Doc Rivers said: "I don't know if it spurred anyone on, but I hope it gave everyone a history lesson in some ways. I thought it was a really classy move, and really cool to watch. I think it played in our favor, the atmosphere, because they had to get it from somewhere, and maybe those shorts helped us. I told Kobe, the one thing I know from this point on, our generation had better bodies than their generation, because they looked horrible in those shorts."

Kobe Bryant said he felt visually raped: "I don't know what it feels like to wear a thong, but I imagine it feels something like what we had on in the first half. I felt violated. I felt naked. It's one thing to see films with guys wearing those things. ... I'd rather stay warm, man."

Mark and Donnie Wahlberg appeared to enjoy themselves.

Lakers2

And shooting guard Sasha Vujačić appeared to have no problem with the costume change.

Vujacic

Boston 110, Lakers 91 [ap via yahoo]


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