Indiana Pacers' center Roy Hibbert was slapped with a $75,000 fine by the NBA for reportedly letting a gay slur and expletive slip during his news conference after Pacers' 91-77 win over the Miami Heat Saturday night (June 1).
The 7'2'' basketballer said "no homo" after claiming the Heat “stretched (him) out so much” and called members of the media "motherfuckers" for not watching the Pacers during the televised presser after Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals.
“You know what, because y’all motherfuckers don’t watch us play throughout the year, to tell you the truth," he said, when asked his thoughts on being named Defensive Player of the Year. "I don't care if I get fined because we play on TV, all the time. Reporters are the ones voting and if I don't make it that's fine. I'm still gonna do what I have to do."
Hibbert then issued an official apology through a press release Sunday from the team:
"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."
Commissioner David Stern also voiced his opinion. “While Roy has issued an apology, which is no doubt sincere, a fine is necessary to reinforce that such offensive comments will not be tolerated by the NBA,” he said in a statement.
The NBA star was spotted on Twitter, reaching out to Jason Collins, a league veteran who recently came out as gay.
@jasoncollins34 hey can I get a follow. Would like to discuss something's with you.
— Roy Hibbert (@Hoya2aPacer) June 2, 2013
Pacers coach Frank Vogel defended Hibbert, stating that the focus was now on Game 7. "I support him," Vogel told CBS Sports. "I know he's not that person to do something like that or use those words. That it was a mistake. He knows he's wrong; I don't have to tell him he's wrong. And just to understand we all love him and we're going to help him move past it very quickly."
Watch the news conference below.
Photo Credit: Getty Images