ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski caught in a controversy as he sent an ‘F-bomb’ to senator Josh Hawley, only to apologise shortly after for his actions.
Woj sent out an abuse ridden email to senator Josh Hawley, after he proposed that the NBA should allow players to use ‘Anti-china’ messages on the back of their jerseys too.
The sequence of events are listed below.
NBA players to display social justice messages on jerseys
The NBA is reportedly allowing players to choose a social justice message to display on the backs of their jerseys for the upcoming NBA restart. These messages must come from a list which has reportedly been approved by the NBA and NBPA. The reported list of preapproved messages for players to wear when the NBA resumes at the end of the month include “Black Lives Matter,” “Sí Se Puede (Yes We Can),” “Anti-Racist,” and more.
Hawley challenges NBA commissioner Adam Silver
Josh Hawley sent a letter to Silver — which asked if the league would allow for players to promote pro–law enforcement or anti–Chinese Communist Party messages. In his letter, Hawley challenges the NBA over its “decisions about which messages to allow and which to censor.”
Josh Hawley has been working hard to find a gimmick that would capture the nation’s attention. Today, he finally made it happen. You’ve earned this, Senator. pic.twitter.com/tAugwZcwU1
— Jason Kander (@JasonKander) July 10, 2020
“If I am right — if the NBA is more committed to promoting the CCP’s interests than to celebrating its home nation — your fans deserve to know that is your view. If not, prove me wrong,” Hawley writes. “Let your players stand up for the Uighurs and the people of Hong Kong. Let them stand up for American law enforcement if they so choose. Give them the choice to write ‘Back the Blue’ on their jerseys. Or ‘Support our Troops.’ Maybe ‘God Bless America.’ What could be more American than that?”
Adrian Wojnarowski curses Josh Hawley; Issues apology afterwards
Adrian Wojnarowski allegedly sends abusive email to senator who suggested pro cop, military NBA jerseys. Less than two hours after tweeting out his letter to Silver, Hawley shared another tweet appearing to show ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski’s response to the letter.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 10, 2020
Wojnarowski issued an apology for his email. “I was disrespectful and I made a regrettable mistake. I’m sorry for the way I handled myself and I am reaching out immediately to Sen. Hawley to apologize directly,” he said in a statement. “I also need to apologize to my ESPN colleagues because I know my actions were unacceptable and should not reflect on any of them.”
“This is completely unacceptable behavior and we do not condone it,” ESPN wrote in an emailed statement.
“It is inexcusable for anyone working for ESPN to respond in the way Adrian did to Senator Hawley. We are addressing it directly with Adrian and specifics of those conversations will remain internal.”
Not the first time NBA is dragged into a controversy
The NBA, China, and Hong Kong discussion has been a heated one dating back to October of 2019 when Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey tweeted ‘Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong’ expressing his support of major pro-democracy protests surrounding an extradition bill introduced in April.
China responded by flexing its muscle, telling the NBA and LeBron James to ‘shut up and dribble’ and the league obliged.
When the league declined to stand by the people of Hong Kong or Rockets GM Daryl Morey’s inoffensive tweet defending them, Hawley was part of a group ripping the NBA that included everyone from Ted Cruz to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.