LOS ANGELES, Nov. 21 (Mehr News Agency) -- Clippers TV announcers Ralph Lawler and Michael Smith were suspended one game for their comments in Wednesday's game about Memphis' Hamed Haddadi.
According to NBA.com, Toward the end of the 106-91 loss to the Grizzlies, Haddadi entered the game. A 7-foot-2 center, Haddadi is the first Iranian to play in the NBA. When he entered, Smith began a 40-second exchange by saying, 'Look who's in?" Lawler then answered, "Hamed Haddadi. Where's he from?" The exchange continued as follows:
Smith: "He's the first Iranian to play in the NBA."
Lawler: "There aren't any Iranian players in the NBA."
Smith: "He's the only one."
Lawler: "He's from Iran?"
Smith: "I guess so."
Lawler: "That Iran?"
Lawler: "The real Iran?"
Lawler: "Wow. Haddadi -- that's H-A-D-D-A-D-I."
Smith: "You're sure it's not Borat's older brother?"
Smith: "If they ever make a movie about Haddadi, I'm going to get Sacha Baron Cohen to play the part."
Lawler: "Here's Haddadi. Nice little back-door pass. I guess those Iranians can pass the ball."
Smith: "Especially the post players.
Lawler: "I don't know about their guards."
The duo did not work Friday's night telecast against the Denver Nuggets at Staples Center by the Fox Sports Prime Ticket cable network.
Lawler and Smith made their off-the-cuff comments about the Iranian-born center during Wednesday night's telecast from Memphis. The on-air banter offended a viewer who e-mailed Fox to complain, according to AP.
"We regret the remarks made by Clippers announcers Michael Smith and Ralph Lawler during Wednesday's telecast," Fox said in a statement.
"While we believe that Michael and Ralph did not intend their exchange to be offensive, the comments were inappropriate."
"We extend our apologies to Hamed Haddadi of the Memphis Grizzlies and to anyone who was offended. We have addressed the situation with Michael and Ralph and have taken appropriate action."
... Payvand News - 11/21/09 ... --