Grant Napear has resigned from his position as the play-by-play commentator for the Sacramento Kings following the backlash he received for a tweet about the Black Lives Matter movement, according to Jason Jones of The Athletic.
Napear has also been fired from Sports 1140 KHTK, Bonneville Sacramento announced in a statement on Tuesday. Napear was placed on administrative leave by the radio station on Monday.
Bonneville Sacramento has parted ways with Grant Napear. pic.twitter.com/n2T7CFOItP— Sports 1140 KHTK (@Sports1140KHTK) June 2, 2020
Napear released a statement about his decision to walk away from the Kings on Tuesday:
Grant Napear statement following his resignation from the Sacramento Kings:— Sean Cunningham (@SeanCunningham) June 2, 2020
“I want to thank the fans for their overwhelming love and support. I will always remain a part of Kings nation in my heart.”
Napear has been the Kings’ television play-by-play announcer since 1988. He also hosted The Grant Napear Show with Doug Christie on Sports 1140 KHTK.
Napear’s resignation from the Kings and firing from KHTK comes on the heels of his response to DeMarcus Cousins’ question about the Black Lives Matter movement.
Hey!!!! How are you? Thought you forgot about me. Haven't heard from you in years. ALL LIVES MATTER...EVERY SINGLE ONE!!! https://t.co/DfzKl3w0jm— Grant Napear (@GrantNapearshow) June 1, 2020
The tweet drew immediate criticism from former Kings players, including arguably the greatest player to ever play for Sacramento, Chris Webber.
Demarcus we know and have known who grant is. The team knows as well. I’ve told them many times. They’ve seen it. They know who he is. https://t.co/4DI4f1DGUp— Chris Webber (@realchriswebber) June 1, 2020
Matt Barnes even went as far as to call Napear a “closet racist.”
Would expect nothing less from a closet racists— Matt Barnes (@Matt_Barnes22) June 1, 2020
This isn’t the first time Napear has created controversy around himself, either.
In 2015, Napear defended shamed Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling on his radio show, despite the fact that there was audio of Sterling making racist comments about minorities. Napear doubled down on his opinion of Sterling in 2018, when he said Sterling couldn’t be racist because he hired Doc Rivers and Elgin Baylor.
Napear has apologized for his most recent comments on Twitter:
If it came across as dumb I apologize. That was not my intent. That's how I was raised. It has been engrained in me since I can remember. I've been doing more listening than talking the past few days. I believe the past few days will change this country for the better! https://t.co/Gsh84BPBEk— Grant Napear (@GrantNapearshow) June 1, 2020
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.