Kings announcer dubbed 'closet racist' resigns after 'all lives matter' conflict with DeMarcus Cousins

Yahoo Sports

Longtime Sacramento Kings play-by-play man Grant Napear has resigned following conflict over an “all lives matter” tweet sent to DeMarcus Cousins.

The Kings announced the news in a statement Tuesday.

“Grant Napear has resigned from the Sacramento Kings, the statement reads. “We thank him for his contributions to the team and wish him all the best.”

Napear was suspended from his radio show on Monday following a Twitter confrontation that involved Cousins and fellow former Kings Chris Webber and Matt Barnes.

Sports 1140 KHTK announced on Tuesday that Napear has also been fired from his radio gig.

What happened

Amid the backdrop of the nationwide protests over George Floyd’s death, Cousins asked Napear his thoughts on “Black Lives Matter.” Napear responded with an all-caps response declaring that “ALL LIVES MATTER.”

Chris Webber, Matt Barnes weighed in

Cousins responded “Lol as expected” and drew the attention of Barnes, who called Napear a “closet racist.”

Webber also made his thoughts clear on Napear.

Napear’s explanation

Napear, 60, had been the Kings play-by-play announcer since 1988. He pleaded ignorance to the insensitivity of his statement in a Monday interview with Sacramento Bee columnist Marcos Bretón.

“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. I’m 60 years old and I still have a lot to learn.”

“All Lives Matter” is a retort frequently used to shut down the concerns of black Americans advocating against police brutality.

Chris Webber and DeMarcus Cousins both criticized Grant Napear before his resignation. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Chris Webber and DeMarcus Cousins both criticized Grant Napear before his resignation. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

Napear also issued a response on Twitter Sunday night.

According to the Bee, Napear had created a public stir before on issues of race when he argued that former Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, can’t be racist since he hired black people.

With his track record considered, it appears that his statements defending himself were not enough to save his job.

More from Yahoo Sports:

What to Read Next