Pacers center Roy Hibbert, a budding superstar who helped his team force a deciding Game 7 in the Eastern Conference finals against the Miami Heat with a 91-76 victory Saturday night in Indianapolis, has issued an apology for using a gay slur during his postgame news conference.
Hibbert, a defensive force at 7-foot-2 who is becoming a presence on offense, followed a question from a reporter about LeBron James by responding, "no homo." He later dropped an f-bomb when asked why he thought he finished so low in the media voting for the NBA's defensive player of the year.
“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," Hibbert said a statement released Sunday by the Pacers.
Hibbert had 24 points and 12 rebounds in the Game 6 victory against Miami, which will host Game 7 on Monday night.
When asked by a reporter about his lack of support for defensive-player-of-the-year honors, Hibbert replied, "Y'all [expletive] don't watch us play throughout the year, to tell you the truth. That's fine. I'm going to be real with you, and I don't care if I get fined. You know what, we play, we're not on TV all the time. Reporters are the ones that are voting. And it is what it is. If I don't make it, that's fine. I'm still going to do what I have to do."
Here is Hibbert's complete apology:
"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."
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