Roy Hibbert of the Indiana Pacers was fined $75,000 by the National Basketball Association yesterday for using “inappropriate and vulgar language” during his news conference following Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Miami Heat.
Hibbert, 26, had used a gay slur in response to a question about his defense on LeBron James and also cursed when responding to a question about why he finished so low in the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year voting. The Pacers center apologized for his remarks yesterday in an e-mailed statement.
“While Roy has issued an apology, which is no doubt sincere, a fine is necessary to reinforce that such offensive comments will not be tolerated by the NBA,” league Commissioner David Stern said in a statement.
Hibbert had 24 points and 11 rebounds in the Pacers’ 91-77 victory two days ago that tied the playoff series at three games apiece and forced a decisive Game 7 today in Miami.
Hibbert said his comments were “disrespectful and offensive,” and not a reflection of his personal views.
“I used a slang term that is not appropriate in any setting, private or public,” he said, “And the language I used definitely has no place in a public forum, especially over live television. I apologize to those who I have offended, to our fans and to the Pacers’ organization.”