ESPN Apologizes For “Auctioning” Players In Fantasy Football Segment

ESPN recently issued an apology for running a controversial segment regarding the fantasy draft of football players, reports Sports Illustrated. Critics said the show was racist because it closely mimicked a slave auction.

READ: Cleveland Browns Coach Would Rather His Players Not Exercise First Amendment Right This Season

“I don’t know if this tone-deaf fantasy football auction segment that ESPN2 aired yesterday, with its galling resemblance to a slave auction, means that nobody involved in its production saw or understood Get Out, or if they’ve never read a history book, or if they’re all just really dumb, nor do I know which of those options would be worse,” writes Billy Haisley of Deadspin.

The network has shown remorse. “Auction drafts are a common part of fantasy football, and ESPN’s segments replicated an auction draft with a diverse slate of top professional football players. Without that context, we understand the optics could be portrayed as offensive, and we apologize,” ESPN said, according to USA Today Sports.

READ: The 10 Most Racist Moments In Recent Sports History

The dispute surrounding this topic arrives on the heels of violence stemming from the white supremacy rallies that were exhibited this past weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia. However, auction drafts are common in fantasy-style games. Yet ESPN’s choice to “sell” off black and white players is troubling.

NFL player Odell Beckham Jr. was “auctioned” in the draft and expressed his distaste on Twitter. 

Do you think ESPN’s auction was innocuous or just unintelligent?