Last month, Kobe Bryant was in the spotlight for uttering a gay slur on the bench in a Lakers home game against the Spurs.  I thought at the time that it was surprising that this kind of thing didn’t happen more often, realizing the language that exists in pro sports and the amount of TV cameras all over the place.  Well, lo and behold, it happened again in the Eastern Conference Finals last night on TNT.  This time, it was Joakim Noah’s turn to use a gay slur.  Here’s the expletive-laden video…

Kobe was fined 100k, so I would expect Noah to be fined the same amount.  If David Stern does more or less, I’m sure there will be an outcry from somewhere.  If there is one difference in this situation though, Noah is directing his comments towards a (likely heckling and obnoxious) fan and not on the bench about a referee.  Does that make it more or less acceptable?  Probably not.  One thing though is that a month after Kobe’s comments, Noah’s slur comes in the midst of Phoenix Suns President Rick Welts coming out and publicly stating that he is gay as well as an ESPN Radio host in New York, Jared Max.  Slowly but surely, the tide is turning and sports is catching up to other parts of society in terms of awareness and acceptance.  Hopefully this is the last of these videos we have to see.

About Matt Yoder

Award winning sportswriter at The Comeback and Awful Announcing. The biggest cat in the whole wide world.