Hawks general manager crossed a line at a recent season ticket holder event when he joked that he related to argumentative fans because he has a black wife. First off, not funny. Also, for a franchise that has a history of race issues among management, this was inappropriate.
A report earlier on Tuesday said the GM would not face any discipline from the team. That’s now been refuted by a new report from Mark Spears of The Undefeated (it was another reporter with The Undefeated who had the original story).
Atlanta Hawks general manager Wes Wilcox has received an undisclosed discipline from the organization for a racially charged joke he made during a season-ticket holder event last month, a team executive told ESPN’s The Undefeated…
A Hawks internal investigation from Dec. 27 to Jan. 9 that included interviews with attendees concluded that Wilcox didn’t use the words “angry and argumentative,” but the mention of race merited his being reprimanded internally by the franchise.
“After hearing multiple sides of the story and getting multiple eyewitness accounts of what took place, I am not convinced that what we heard and read in Deadspin (who had the original report of the season ticket holder event) is a direct quote that was used,” Nzinga Shaw, Hawks and Philips Arena chief diversity and inclusion officer, told The Undefeated on Tuesday. “Wes, however, certainly did make his off-color statement, which included elements of describing his wife’s race. People that were in the room could make the assumption that he was using her race for the reason of the comments that followed. We certainly do not approve of this behavior and we are going to handle this manner internally.”
That door may be closed, but it’s not locked. If there’s another racially charged incident with Hawks management/ownership, expect that door to be opened up again.