During the New York Knicks' thrilling win Friday night over the Los Angeles Lakers, led by point guard Jeremy Lin's 38 points, ESPN showed a "Yellow Mamba" sign a fan was displaying at the game, leaving the network with some real explaining to do.
While the excitement of Lin's remarkable play of late and his role in the resurgence of the Knicks is a tremendous story, there is no excuse to ruin the moment by showing something some would consider racist and is highly controversial.
Here is a picture of the sign, via Mocksession:
Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant's nickname is the "Black Mamba," which is an acceptable nickname because a black mamba is an actual kind of snake. There is no animal called a yellow mamba.
ESPN should be ashamed that they showed this sign during their broadcast.
Putting the camera on a fan with a sign like that is not something that happens by accident. Whoever was producing this broadcast needs to take responsibility for this action because it's extremely unfair to the Knicks and Lin that this marvelous win might be overshadowed a bit by a tasteless, fan-made sign.
While fans are certainly trying to come up with a cool nickname for Lin, there is absolutely no excuse to promote a nickname such as "Yellow Mamba."
ESPN owes the Knicks, Lin and its millions of viewers an apology for their terrible lack of judgment.
Nicholas Goss is an NBA Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report