Image Credit: Sacramento Kings
The play-by-play announcer for the NBA’s Sacramento Kings franchise, Grant Napear, was fired following an exchange on Twitter with former Kings center DeMarcus Cousins.
Cousins asked Napear for his thoughts on the Black Lives Matter movement. However, Napear responded, “All Lives Matter…Every Single One!”
Well that's very unfortunate that you interpreted my tweet that way. I believe every life is precious. Sorry, but that's how I feel. If you can't respect that I'm sorry. https://t.co/9vG2kClo6R
— Grant Napear (@GrantNapearshow) June 1, 2020
Two days later the Kings said in a statement said Napear resigned from his TV role.
Following news of his resignation and dismissal, Napear issued a statement, per James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area and NBC Sports California:
“I want to thank the fans for their overwhelming love and support,” Napear said in a statement. “I will always remain a part of Kings nation in my heart.”
This is a white problem. How are WE Caucasian people going to create equality? Listen. Read. Walk in others shoes. Organize. Sacrifice. Change. Support. VOTE! These are the MINIMUM of REPARATIONS.
— Steve Nash (@SteveNash) June 1, 2020
Bonneville Sacramento, which operates Sports 1140 KHTK Radio, also announced that it has parted ways with Napear.
“His recent comments about the Black Lives Matter movement do no reflect the views or values of Bonneville International Corporation,” the media company said. “The timing of Grant’s tweet was particularly insensitive. After reviewing the matter carefully, we have made the difficult decision to part ways with Grant.”
Napear has been the Kings’ play-by-play announcer since 1988.
— DeMarcus Cousins (@boogiecousins) June 1, 2020
His remarks received numerous reactions from former Kings players on Twitter. From Cousins, Chris Webber, Matt Barnes to Doug Christie, who was a television color commentator alongside Napear.
“Demarcus we know and have known who [Napear] is,” Webber tweeted. “The team knows as well. I’ve told them many times. They’ve seen it. They know who he is.”
@boogiecousins you know @GrantNapearshow is grown and can speak for himself… you know how I feel so call the show 339.1140 I’m here for the conversation and to further movement!!! All love bruh🙏🏽👊🏽#Respect https://t.co/N3u8p3G2O3
— Douglas Christie (@TheDougChristie) June 1, 2020
Napear also issued an apology to Marcos Breton of the Sacramento Bee on Monday for his remarks.
“I’m not as educated on BLM as I thought I was,” Napear said. “I had no idea that when I said ‘All Lives Matter’ that it was counter to what BLM was trying to get across.
“I’m in pain,” Napear added. “I’m 60 years old and I still have a lot learn.”