Ok, I am when someone who get bothered when someone makes disparaging comments about another ethnic group. Fox suspended LA Clippers announcers Ralph Lawler and Michael Smith for one game because of one email from “a viewer who e-mailed Fox to complain.” Give me a break. Please, what is so offensive about this conversation?
The transcript of the conversation between Lawler and Smith, which occurred late in the game, was printed on the Los Angeles Times’ Web site:
Smith: “Look who’s in.”
Lawler: “Hamed Haddadi. Where’s he from?”
Smith: “He’s the first Iranian to play in the NBA.” (Smith pronounced Iranian as “Eye-ranian,” a pronunciation that offended the viewer who complained.)
Lawler: “There aren’t any Iranian players in the NBA,” repeating Smith’s mispronunciation.
Smith: “He’s the only one.”
Lawler: “He’s from Iran?”
Smith: “I guess so.”
Lawler: “That Iran?”
Lawler: “The real Iran?”
Lawler: “Wow. Haddadi that’s H-A-D-D-A-D-I.”
Smith: “You’re sure it’s not Borat’s older brother?”
Smith: “If they ever make a movie about Haddadi, I’m going to get Sacha Baron Cohen to play the part.”
Lawler: “Here’s Haddadi. Nice little back-door pass. I guess those Iranians can pass the ball.”
Smith: “Especially the post players.
Lawler: “I don’t know about their guards.”
Michael Smith is a former all-American 6′ 10″ forward from BYU. He served a mission from 1984-1986. He was a drafted in the First Round (13th overall) by the Boston Celtics, where he played 2 years. He played 1 year for the LA Clippers before jumping into the broadcast booth.
I’m sorry, but I don’t think this conversation deserved more than a verbal warning. Suspension? Give me a break!