There’s a lot to talk about when it comes to Roy Hibbert’s presser the other day. First and foremost, whether you like his language or not, he was right about ya’ll mothafuckas. The Pacers got no real attention, other than some lip services that they “might” be a team to push the Heat. Before they generally shrugged it off as one of those things you write to fill space during a long season. And, you know, there was the issue that most of the press seemed to favor the Knicks over the Pacers and that the Pacers didn’t have a shot in this series against the Heat. If those mothafuckas had been watching, those stories would have never been written. And, yes, Roy would have finished much higher (if not won) for Defensive Player of the Year.
Long story short, yeah, I really had no problem with Roy’s comments in regards to that.
Actually, I didn’t really have any problem with Roy’s words, period.
“No homo.” Was it necessary to drop that in there? No, it wasn’t. Was there a shred of malice in it? No, none at all. And I don’t believe any gay people I know would ever take offense to it. Did it deserve a fine? Maybe.* It’s. . .well, it’s complicated.
*Probably not $75,000 worth, but something, maybe.
We touched on this a little while ago when Jason Collins came out. It’s a touchy and different time for sexual orientation and sports. Obviously, we’ve seen the video where LeBron James dropped the exact same language in the exact same context* and not a peep was made about it a couple years ago. And there are always peeps about LeBron. I’m not going to make a big stink about the unfairness of the situation, though, because it truly is a different time in the NBA and this country.
*Is there any other context to drop “no homo?”
Roy Hibbert made the mistake of using “no homo” about a year or two later than anybody else I know used it. Society has made a collective shrug about gay rights, wondering why it’s a big deal any more. The corner seemed to turn awfully quickly once we got there. Roy Hibbert made a comment in jest, complete with a smile and chuckle. No malice intended. Now, if he had dropped “fag” or something like that, things would have been different. But I just don’t feel like anybody can say “no homo” and mean any serious harm.
If anything, it’s almost the perfect weapon against being a homophobe. You are going out of your way to point out you said something that could easily be interpreted as gay. If you were truly homophobic, truly set against anything homosexual, why would you ever voluntarily point out, “Hey, that kinda sounds like something that could describe two dudes having sex. Pretty funny, huh?” There are certainly a lot more hateful things that could and have been said. There was no hate here, just as there was no hate in calling media members mother fuckers. The dude was just jacked up after winning a big game and got a little too giddy.
Again, is a national press conference following game six of the Eastern Conference Finals the right time to drop “no homo” or “mother fucker?” No, probably not. I know sports is a little different animal than most workplaces, but it is still work and Roy should probably be more professional. And he typically is. But is it anything to get really bent out of shape about? No. Not in the least. And if you are getting worked up about it, you probably need to take a closer look in the mirror and decide who really needs to grow up.