May 20, 2018

Oklahoma City Thunder Suspends Announcer After 'Cotton-Picking' Comment

14 April 2018, 11:24 | Winifred Adams

Modal Trigger Russell Westbrook Thunder play-by-play announcer Brian Davis Getty Images Facebook

Thunder announcer suspended for Westbrook ‘cotton pickin’ comment

The Oklahoma City Thunder responded to Davis' comments Thursday, saying that although he says he was misinterpreted, his words were "offensive and inappropriate".

On Wednesday night, Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook was doing what he always does and that was will his team to victory while compiling stats like insane. Broadcaster Brian Davis was providing the commentary for the game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Memphis Grizzlies when he made the remark.

Davis used the term to describe Westbrook's play in the second quarter, while the superstar point guard was on his way to becoming the first National Basketball Association player to average a triple-double in two seasons.

"We think obviously the use of that term is offensive and inappropriate, and I expressed that to Brian [Wednesday] night", Mahoney told Katz.

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The announcer said that he didn't attach any racial meaning to his comment, but accepted the suspension. "Brian assures me it was not meant in any derogatory way, and he apologizes".

The term is viewed by many as offensive as picking cotton was a primary duty of black slaves in the South. Davis is white and Westbrook is black. "While unintentional, I understand and acknowledge the gravity of the situation".

"I offer my honest apology and realize that, while I committed a lapse in judgement, such mistakes come with consequences. This is an appropriate outcome for my actions", Davis concluded.

The team's vice president of broadcasting Dan Mahoney didn't defend Davis, who has been the on-air announcer for the Thunder since 2008.

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