NBA All-Star weekend has taken a rather unfortunate turn for Philadelphia 76ers guard JJ Redick.
In a video featuring numerous league stars and coaches wishing China a happy new year, a clip of Redick offering his best wishes appeared to feature a racial slur. As soon as the video was released, social media lit up with outrage over Redick’s words and a new cut of the montage was released with the Redick scene taken out.
The video was not produced by the NBA, but has received an excess of attention regardless.
Redick tweeted a statement on the matter early Sunday afternoon in which he claims he was tongue tied and stumbled over his words.
Just saw a video that is being circulated of me wishing a happy new year to NBA fans in China.Clearly I was tongue tied, as the word I purportedly said is not in my vocabulary. I’m disappointed that anyone would think I would use that word. I love & respect our friends in China.
— JJ Redick (@JJRedick) February 18, 2018
That may very well have been the case — it appeared as if he was trying to say “NBA China” — but isn’t an excuse either.
We’ll see if there is any action taken by the the NBA or the Sixers. NBA outreach has grown exponentially in China in recent years with some of the league’s stars becoming as big overseas as they are in the United States. Mistake or not, this isn’t the type of action that goes unnoticed.
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