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Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards fined $40,000 for anti-gay video

He has previously apologized for the since-deleted clip. "What I said was immature, hurtful, and disrespectful, and I’m incredibly sorry,”
Image: Minnesota Timberwolves forward Anthony Edwards
Minnesota Timberwolves forward Anthony Edwards (1) in the first half of an NBA basketball game, in Denver, on April 1, 2022.David Zalubowski / AP file

The NBA has fined Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards $40,000 for making anti-LGBTQ remarks in a video on his Instagram account.

In it, Edwards, who was in a vehicle and being recorded, rolls down a car window and calls a group of shirtless men “queer."

The video, apparently from the weekend of Sept. 10, was posted to his Instagram account but soon deleted. On Sept. 11, he posted a message of apology and regret on his Twitter account.

"What I said was immature, hurtful, and disrespectful, and I’m incredibly sorry," said Edwards, 21. "It’s unacceptable for me or anyone to use that language in such a hurtful way, there’s no excuse for it, at all. I was raised better than that!"

The NBA on Tuesday called Edwards' language "offensive and derogatory."

The fine was in line with the NBA's reaction to similar situations.

Kevin Durant was fined $50,000 last year for homophobic and misogynistic private messages sent to actor Michael Rapaport, who posted them.

Durant, the Brooklyn Nets forward, also apologized.

In 2011, the Chicago Bulls’ Joakim Noah was fined a similar amount for hurling an anti-gay slur at a fan.

Sports Equality Foundation board member Anthony Nicodemo, who coaches high school basketball in Yonkers, New York, said the fine was light and may not be enough to change players' behavior.

"When a league like the NBA opts for a light fine following an extremely homophobic post from one of their players it sends a message that this behavior is allowable," he said by email Tuesday. "Rainbow jerseys and marching in Prides are impactful, but quickly canceled out if homophobic behavior is allowed amongst players." 

NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar recommended that Edwards volunteer for an LGBTQ organization.

"I don’t think an apology — however heartfelt — is enough," he wrote on his blog. "Edwards needs to repair the damage with some voluntary community service with LGBTQ+ organizations, particularly youth groups, to show his support."

Edwards' representatives did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday night.

He is entering his third season as a shooting guard for the Timberwolves, who previously reprimanded him.

“We are disappointed in the language and actions Anthony Edwards displayed on social media,” the team’s president of basketball operations, Tim Connelly, said in a statement. “The Timberwolves are committed to being an inclusive and welcoming organization for all and apologize for the offense this has caused to so many.”