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NBA star Rajon Rondo apologises for calling gay ref a ‘faggot’

Joseph McCormick December 16, 2015

NBA star Rajon Rondo has offered an apology to the referee towards he directed a number of homophobic slurs.

Three officials heard the outburst after Rondo was ejected by the referee for technical fouls during a game in Mexico City on 3 December.

CHARLOTTE, NC - OCTOBER 15:  Head coach Sam Vincent of the New Jersey Nets questions official Bill Kennedy during the second half of their preseason game against the Charlotte Bobcats at Charlotte Bobcats Arena October 15, 2007 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Charlotte defeated New Jersey 96-86.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Sam Vincent;Bill Kennedy

Speaking to referee Bill Kennedy, who incidentally came out as gay yesterday, Rondo said: “You’re a motherf**king faggot… You’re a f**king faggot, Billy.”

According to reports from officials at the game, Rondo had “aggressively pursued” Kennedy, and later “had to be restrained by teammates”.

Rondo on Monday tweeted to say why he made the comments, saying it was “out of frustration and emotion”, but has now made an apology.

“Yesterday, I said that my words toward Bill Kennedy were unacceptable and did not reflect my feelings toward the LGBT community,” Rondo said Tuesday.

“Some have interpreted my comments as a non-apology. I want to be clear, from the bottom of my heart that I am truly sorry for what I said to Bill. There is no place on or off the court for language that disrespects anyone’s sexual orientation.

“That is not who I am or what I believe and I will strive every day to be a better person.”

The team’s owner Vivek Ranadive has apologised to Kennedy, and released a statement on Monday.

“Rajon’s comment is not reflective of the culture of the Sacramento Kings organization or the world we want to live in,” Ranadive said in the statement. “He’s apologized, and has been suspended by the NBA. On behalf of the team, I apologize to Bill Kennedy for any harm this may have caused.”

The general manager of Kings also apologised, it is understood, in a phone call to Kennedy.

More: basketball, bill kennedy, NBA, rajon rondo, US

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