‘Nobody actually cares’: Nets player hit with $40k fine for ‘derogatory and disparaging’ comment

The NBA fined Brooklyn Nets guard Cam Thomas a whopping $40,000 on Friday for using what the league deemed “derogatory and disparaging language” against gay people during a postgame interview.

The Nets had just bested the Chicago Bulls 116-105 on Thursday when Thomas and fellow teammate Spencer Dinwiddie were being interviewed by TNT.

Earlier in the week, Dinwiddie commented on the deal that brought him and Dorian Finney-Smith to Brooklyn from the Dallas Mavericks in a swap for Kyrie Irving, saying, “We may not be the best trade package, but we’re the best-looking. And the Nets needed some help in that department.”

On Thursday, Thomas quipped, “We already had good-looking guys, no homo.”

The phrase, “no homo,” is often used among some men who wish to objectively compliment another man’s looks without it being viewed as a pick-up line or an expression of sexual attraction. Essentially, it means, “I’m not gay, but that is a good-looking guy.”

The intended compliment is seen by many as a slam against homosexuals — a fact TNT’s Jared Greenberg was quick to note.

“All right,” Greenberg replied, “I’m sure the league office will enjoy that one.”

Spoiler: The league was not amused.

In a terse press release, the NBA stated:

Brooklyn Nets guard Cam Thomas has been fined $40,000 for using derogatory and disparaging language during a live television interview, it was announced Friday by Joe Dumars, Executive Vice President, Head of Basketball Operations.

Thomas made his comments during an on-court interview at the conclusion of the Nets’ 116-105 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Feb. 9 at Barclays Center.


The off-the-cuff comment was clearly an embarrassment for the league, which was celebrating Thomas on Wednesday for becoming the youngest player in NBA history to record three straight 40+ point games.

The 21-year-old sensation took to Twitter to apologize.

“I want to apologize for the insensitive word I used in the post-game interview,” he wrote. “I was excited about the win and was being playful. I definitely didn’t intend to offend anyone, but realize that I probably did. My apologies again. Much love.”

Online, many fans can’t believe an apology was necessary.

“OMG this world is so freakin soft,” wrote one user. “I was watching with my 8 year old and we laughed when you said it. If people got ‘offended’ then they have issues.”

Many compared the fine to the way the team and the league dealt with fellow Nets player Kyrie Irving last year after he linked to a movie and book, “Hebrews to Negroes,” in a Twitter post.

The work was described by Rolling Stone as being “stuffed with antisemitic tropes.”

In that incident, the Nets came out swinging, stating in a press release:

We were dismayed today, when given an opportunity in a media session, that Kyrie refused to unequivocally say he has no antisemitic beliefs, nor acknowledge specific hateful material in the film. This was not the first time he had the opportunity – but failed – to clarify.

Such failure to disavow antisemitism when given a clear opportunity to do so is deeply disturbing, is against the values of our organization, and constitutes conduct detrimental to the team. Accordingly, we are of the view that he is currently unfit to be associated with the Brooklyn Nets. We have decided that Kyrie will serve a suspension without pay until he satisfies a series of objective remedial measures that address the harmful impact of his conduct and the suspension period served is no less than five games.”


To Thomas, one Twitter user stated, “Bruh you lived in Kyrie’s world for too long. Nobody actually cares and zero people were actually offended.”

“If Kyrie said it they’d trade him to the Mavs …oh wait,” wrote another.

But most of Thomas’s supporters saw this as a learning experience for the young celebrity.


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