Sacramento Kings radio broadcaster Grant Napear was placed on administrative leave after he tweeted “All Lives Matter” in response to a question about his thoughts on the Black Lives Matter movement.
Former Kings center Demarcus Cousins asked Napear – who does play-by-play for KHTK – on Sunday about what he thought of Black Lives Matter in the midst of civil unrest in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
Napear replied: “Hey!!!! How are you? Thought you forgot about me. Haven’t heard from you in years. ALL LIVES MATTER…EVERY SINGLE ONE!!!”
The tweet led to ridicule from Cousins and former Kings players Chris Webber and Matt Barnes.
“Lol as expected,” Cousins replied.
Barnes tweeted: “Would expect nothing less from a closet racists [sic].”
Webber added: “Demarcus we know and have known who grant is. The team knows as well. I’ve told them many times. They’ve seen it. They know who he is.”
Jason Ross, a fellow Kings broadcaster, said Monday that Napear was placed on administrative leave, according to the Sacramento Bee.
“Grant Napear has been placed on administrative leave while we are investigating the statement that was made on Twitter,” Ross said.
The Kings separated themselves from Napear’s comments.
“Grant’s recent Twitter comments do not reflect our organization’s views and values,” a team official told the Bee. “We are reviewing the matter further with our broadcast partners NBC Sports California and Sports 1140 KHTK.”
Napear told the Bee: “I’m not as educated on BLM as I thought I was.
“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 learn.”
He added in a separate statement on Twitter: “If it came across as dumb I apologize. That was not my intent. That’s how I was raised. It has been engrained in me since I can remember. I’ve been doing more listening than talking the past few days. I believe the past few days will change this country for the better!”
Napear has been a Kings broadcaster since 1988. He reportedly got into some hot water during his career when he defended disgraced former Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling and argued Sterling couldn’t be labeled a racist because he employs black people.