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Wayne Simmonds spent the first three years of his NHL career with the Los Angeles Kings, sharing the same sports market with Donald Sterling’s LA Clippers.
Now that Sterling has become pro sports’ most prominent racist sack of excrement, and Simmonds is one of the NHL’s most prominent black players, CSN Philly asked for his take on the controversy:
“Make him sell the team, get him out of there,” Simmonds said. “Obviously, basketball is predominantly a black sport. When you have an owner voicing his opinion that way. The coach [Doc Rivers] is black, probably a lot of people in management.
“I’ve heard he’s had people in management quit because of his opinions. Stuff like that. It’s really unfortunate. We live in a world like today where there should be no color. You judge a person by their inside and not by the way they look, their appearance. It just sucks the way it is right now.”
Indeed it does.
Of course, Simmonds isn’t blind to hockey’s lack of diversity, which has become a point of ridicule for those covering the Sterling controversy. He was asked “if racism in hockey is more subtle than the NBA”; his answer is as one might expect from a player that once had a banana thrown at him on the ice:
“It’s not subtle to me,” Simmonds replied. “I’m kind of a fly in a bucket of milk here. There’s not too many guys, African-Americans, playing in the league.
“We have our share of players. We’re in a different situation here than Donald Sterling. He’s kinda the opposite of what I am.”
Incidentally, “Fly In A Bucket Of Milk” would be an amazing title if he every decides to release an autobiography.