Grant Napear Resigns as Kings Announcer After 'All Lives Matter' Twitter Comment

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorJune 1, 2020

SACRAMENTO, CA - OCTOBER 27: Sacramento Kings broadcaster Grant Napear looks on prior to the game between the San Antonio Spurs and Sacramento Kings on October 27, 2016 at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2016 NBAE (Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)
Rocky Widner/Getty Images

The Sacramento Kings announced that television play-by-play announcer and KHTK Radio host Grant Napear has resigned from the team following comments made on Twitter.

"Grant Napear has resigned from the Sacramento Kings," the team said, per Jason Jones of The Athletic. "We thank him for his contributions to the team and wish him all the best."

Napear's tweet was in response to a question from ex-King and current free-agent NBA center DeMarcus Cousins, who asked the broadcaster his thoughts on Black Lives Matter:

Bonneville Sacramento, which operates KHTK Radio, also released a statement that they had parted with Napear:

On Monday, NBC Sports Bay Area released a statement saying they had spoken with the Kings on the matter, per Kings insider James Ham:

"Our company values and honors inclusion and equality. Racism, injustice and violence run counter to everything we stand for and cannot be tolerated in our society. Grant Napear's recent comments on Twitter do not reflect the views of NBC Sports California. We've spoken to Grant's employer, the Sacramento Kings, about the matter."

The Kings released a statement Monday, as well: "Grant's recent Twitter comments do not reflect our organization's views and values. We are reviewing the matter further with our broadcast partners NBC Sports California and Sports 1140 KHTK."

Napear spoke with Marcos Breton of the Sacramento Bee on Monday.

"I'm not as educated on BLM as I thought I was," Napear told Marcos Breton of the Sacramento Bee. "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," Napear added. "I'm 60 years old and I still have a lot learn." 

Napear also expressed remorse in a tweet on Sunday:

Breton noted the issues with the "All Lives Matter" phrase:

"I've stopped trying to argue with people who either hate BLM or consider it a terrorist group. They are not. As the Floyd case proves again—and we should be beyond needing any more proof—police brutality has resulted in the deaths of too many black men.

"Implicit bias within police departments results in little kids getting beat up for no reason, as we saw in Rancho Cordova recently. In these cases and so many more, we are left to deduce that law enforcement responds differently to people of color. We are left to deduce that people of color are more likely to get killed, get a beat down or suffer indignity in confrontations with law enforcement than white people.

"Those who deny this are part of the problem. Sometimes those who deny it do so with the phrase: 'All Lives Matter.' That phrase is politically fraught and a flash point, as we saw when Napear's tweet blew up."

Breton further spoke on Napear and said he believed his apology to be sincere.

"But if his apology on the radio is as sincere as the one he shared with me, I support forgiveness," Breton wrote. "Our community is hurting right now and this Twitter fight is emblematic of our divisions and our pain."

Nationwide protests have occurred in response to racial inequality and police brutality, sparked by the killing of an unarmed black man, George Floyd, while in Minneapolis police custody on May 25.

Those protests have also occurred in Sacramento, which has also seen the killings of unarmed black men that include Mikel McIntyre and Stephon Clark in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

Protests have occurred in Sacramento for three straight nights, per KCRA-TV.

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