Nets Player Durant Hit with $50K Fine for 'Derogatory,' Anti-LGBTQ Slurs

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Monday April 5, 2021

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant handles the ball during the first half of a preseason NBA basketball game against the Washington Wizards, Sunday, Dec. 13, 2020, in New York.
Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant handles the ball during the first half of a preseason NBA basketball game against the Washington Wizards, Sunday, Dec. 13, 2020, in New York.  (Source:AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

The NBA announced that Brooklyn Nets player Kevin Durant has been hit with a hefty $50,000 fine for the use of "offensive and derogatory language on social media," ESPN reports.

As previosuly reported at EDGE, Durant sent messages to comedian Michael Rapaport that were riddled with homophobic and misogynistic language. Rapaport shared screenshots of those images at Twitter with the comment, "This is supposed to be America's sweetheart right?"

"Durant and Rapaport have shared friendly banter in the past, including the former MVP appearing in a Rapaport comedy video, but it appears Durant crossed the line with these comments," noted Mercury News.

Heavy recalled that the row followed an interview in which Durant, who has suffered with a hamstring injury since February, declined to discuss his medical status with interviewer Charles Barkley, a former player himself and Hall of Fame inductee. Rapaport suggested in a tweet that the Nets forward should not have done the interview at all.

"In response, Durant hurled a firestorm of insults at Rapaport in his direct messages on Instagram," Heavy recounted.

Durant subsequently apologized for the messages, saying, "That's not really what I want people to see and hear from me, but hopefully I can move past it and get back out there on the floor."

Some fans, meantime, were more upset with Rapaport than with Durant, Heavy noted.

"Retired NBA player Ryan Hollins is part of that group," the Heavy story detailed.

" 'You can't talk like you gutter, you street, you're doing that and then at the same time you lawyer up, and you tell on somebody,' Hollis said on Instagram live with King McClure Brandon 'Scoop B' Robinson and Christian Crosby."

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.

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