Grant Napear, Sacramento Kings play by play announcer for 32 years, is out of a job after he took the bait laid by DeMarcus Cousins.
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
While not grounds to normally lose your job, this wasn’t an isolated incident. Napear has a long history of being insensitive and occasionally out right racist. NBA players around the league, and particularly Kings players took to Twitter to let it be known.
Chris Webber, former Kings great, said he and the Kings front office have known for years the kind of guy Napear was.
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
Another former Kings player, Matt Barnes didn’t hold back either, going as far to call Napear a “closet racist.”
Would expect nothing less from a closet racists
— Matt Barnes (@Matt_Barnes22) June 1, 2020
But like mentioned earlier, this wasn’t isolated behavior from Napear.
During the height of the Donald Sterling tapes, Napear backed Sterling. He said that he didn’t understand how Donald Sterling could be called a racist if he’d hired two African American’s; Elgin Baylor as a general manager and Doc Rivers as a coach.
Napear’s support for Sterling came after Elgin Baylor sued Sterling for racial discrimination. It also came directly after the tapes of Sterling making racist comments aimed at Magic Johnson.
When you are supporting a guy the NBA was able to force out of the league, you should check your values and priorities.
Napear continued to dig himself a deeper hole after Colin Kaepernick took a knee in 2016. Napear said he had no interest in discussing Colin Kaepernick’s peaceful protest, despite being the host of a sports talk radio show in California, the state Kaepernick played in.
Twitter did their thing and dug up this gem to further put things into context.
Smh lol. How about if you just look directly at the flag. Is there a rule about where u are supposed to be looking?
— Garrett Temple (@GTemp17) July 22, 2018
Napear’s pattern of being tone-deaf to racial issues doesn’t even stop there. On Twitter, Napear took a shot at a well respected journalist, Marc J. Spears, who contributes to “TheUndefeated” which focuses on the intersection of sports, race and culture. Napear took offense of Spears article looking at minority head-coaching candidates.
How bout just 10 coaches regardless of race? https://t.co/gMEE4DWpKf
— Grant Napear (@GrantNapearshow) April 9, 2018
So while the “All Lives Matter,” response to Demarcus Cousins was the final straw that got Napear ousted, it was not the sole reason. It had been an accumulation of incidents dating back to at least the playing days of Chris Webber in the early 2000’s. The Kings had been looking for a reason to move on and at the height of tensions in this country, Napear gave them cause to cut ties.