After Roy Hibbert dropped the “no homo” line during last night’s press conference, the Internet basically blew up. Many were offended, many thought he shouldn’t talk so reckless on television, many thought it was a harmless joke.
Hibbert seemed to almost immediately realize the gravity of his words, reaching out on Twitter to Jason Collins, who recently became the first openly gay active NBA player. Today, about 12 hours after the comment, the Indiana Pacers center publicly apologized for his remarks, saying he has “deep regret” for his choice of words.
Here’s the official statement, via Pacers.com:
“I am apologizing for insensitive remarks made during the postgame press conference after our victory over Miami Saturday night. They were disrespectful and offensive and not a reflection of my personal views. I used a slang term that is not appropriate in any setting, private or public, and the language I used definitely has no place in a public forum, especially over live television. I apologize to those who I have offended, to our fans and to the Pacers’ organization. I sincerely have deep regret over my choice of words last night.”
The NBA is likely to fine Hibbert for his postgame remarks, which also included him calling the media “motherf**kers.”
Kobe Bryant was fined $100,000 in 2011 for yelling the gay slur “f***ot” towards an NBA official during a game. David Stern called Bryant’s comment “offensive and inexcusable.” Joakim Noah of the Bulls said the same word, towards a fan, in the playoffs about a month later. He was fined $50,000. The price tag was lower because, as reported by ESPN, “Kobe’s fine included discipline for verbal abuse of a game official,” said NBA spokesman Mark Broussard.
Hibbert’s comment was certainly less malicious than those two instances, and he is by all accounts a good guy. No doubt he will try to make up for what he did.
Just remember to watch what you’re saying, Roy.