Categories: Sports

Miami Heat suspends Meyers Leonard after anti-Semitic slur on Twitch


The NBA has suspended Meyers Leonard for a week after an anti-Semitic slur he blurted out during a live-streamed Call of Duty game.

Just like live television, live-streaming has its ups and downs. The latter comes with all the beauty and the dangers that the former has. Now that live streaming has been democratized with high-speed internet and new technology, just about anyone can be a live streamer.

Unfortunately, regular people going on live streams easier imagined than done as compared to live television shows. The latter has a massive production crew that tailors the spiels and segments acted and performed by the celebrities. The latter does not enjoy that.

As such, any slip of the tongue of live streamers can cause outrage in a snap. This goes especially true for live streamers who are actually professionals in another industry.

Meyers Leonard suspended by the Miami Heat for Twitch blunder

The Miami Heat has suspended Meyers Leonard for a week after his anti-Semitic slur during a live-streamed game on Twitch. The sanction imposed by the league comes with a hefty US$50,000 fine. Leonard will make about $9 million from his contract with the team this year.

Meyers Leonard has since apologized for the mistake he made. He has fully acknowledged the impact of his words and has met with league executives to correct his action. Adam Silver said,

“Yesterday, he spoke to representatives of the Anti-Defamation League to better understand the impact of his words and we accept that he is genuinely remorseful.”

Leonard’s slur couldn’t come at a worse time as the NBA is currently advocating hard for racial equality. As such, Leonard’s words will, of course, not be tolerated, notwithstanding its a slur against a different cause. After all, what the NBA is fighting for is equality, not just about race. Instead, it is for the equal treatment of people.

Heat organization has Leonard’s back

While Leonard is away from the team, several key members of the Heat organization have spoken up. For one, they also will not tolerate the hurtful words blurted out by Leonard. However, they have vouched for Leonard’s character within the team. Udonis Haslem, the most senior member of the playing team, said,

“[I have]never heard him use any language that made me uncomfortable at all”

Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra echoes what Haslem said. Spoelstra said that Leonard had been a ‘good teammate’ and a ‘good human being.’ Nonetheless, his actions will not be tolerated, and the aftermath will have to be faced with responsibility.

Image from Chris Smoove/ YouTube thumbnail

Steven Hung

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Steven Hung

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