Heat’s Meyers Leonard uses anti-Semitic slurs during video game broadcast

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“I am deeply sorry for using an anti-Semitic slur on a live broadcast yesterday,” Leonard wrote. “Although I didn’t know what the word meant at the time, my ignorance of its history and how offensive it is to the Jewish community is absolutely no excuse and I was simply wrong. Leonard, who will stay away from the team indefinitely, apologized in a post on Instagram.

“I am now more aware of its meaning and I am committed to properly seeking out people who can help me educate myself about this type of hate and how we can fight it. Heat owner Micky Arison and his son Nick, who is Heat CEO, are Jewish.

“Meyers Leonard will be out of the team indefinitely. The Miami Heat will cooperate with the NBA as it conducts its investigation. “We are shocked and disappointed to see @MeyersLeonard using this ugly and offensive #antisemitic insult. We reached out to @MiamiHEAT and @NBA about this and urge Mr. Leonard to immediately apologize for this blatant and hateful rhetoric, ”the Anti-Defamation League posted on Twitter.

“The Miami Heat vehemently condemns the use of any form of hate speech,” the team said. “The words Meyers Leonard used were wrong and we will not tolerate any hateful language from anyone associated with our franchise. Hearing it from a Miami Heat player is particularly disappointing and hurtful for everyone who works here, as well as for the large communities of South Florida, Miami Heat and the NBA. The Heat also released a strongly worded statement.

The NBA issued fines for offensive and derogatory language, including a $ 100,000 fine for Kobe Bryant after using a homophobic slur directed at a referee in 2011. An NBA spokesperson released a statement on Wednesday saying: are collecting more information. The NBA unequivocally condemns all forms of hate speech.

Leonard, whose brother Bailey served in Afghanistan with the US Marines, was the only Heat player to sing the national anthem during games in the Orlando Bubble. But he was wearing a Black Lives Matter t-shirt and said he believed in the Black Lives Matter movement. Astro Gaming has also ended its relationship with Leonard. Origin PC entered into a partnership agreement with Leonard in May, but released a statement Tuesday saying, “A comment was recently made by Meyers Leonard that does not reflect the values ​​or opinions of Origin PC. We have decided to end our working relationship with Meyers as of 03/09/2021.

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