Kevin Porter was the point guard on some outstanding Washington Bullets teams in the mid-1970s. He’s a local legend in the D.C. area.
Kevin Porter Jr. is the fine young point guard for the Houston Rockets. Like the old Bullet, he’s African-American, but the two are not related.
Porter Jr.’s father served prison time in the 1990s for killing a 14-year-old girl. He claimed the gun went off accidentally. He was shot and killed in 2004.
Glenn Consor broadcasts Washington Wizards basketball games. He has been a fixture in D.C. basketball circles for decades.
Earlier this week, Kevin Porter Jr. hit a very difficult last-second shot to defeat the Wizards. Consor was the color man on the TV broadcast.
In the excitement of the moment, Consor exclaimed, “like his dad, [Porter Jr.] pulled the trigger at the right moment,” i.e. just before the buzzer sounded. In light of the criminal history of Porter Jr.’s father, a Houston Rockets blogger took offense.
Consor promptly apologized to the player, his family, and the Rockets’ organization. So did NBC Sports Washington which broadcast the game. Consor said that he made the comment because he mistakenly believed Porter Jr. was the son of the legendary Bullet point guard.
There is no reason to doubt that Consor’s remark was an honest mistake rather than allusion to the criminality of the player’s father. But LeBron James was “triggered” by what Consor said. And he isn’t buying Consor’s explanation.
James piled on Consor before he saw the explanation, going so far as to call for the announcer to be fired. After seeing it, he deemed it unlikely that Consor thought Porter Jr. was the son of the former Washington player.
That’s idiotic. What is more likely — (1) that Consor, immersed for decades in D.C. basketball lore, would assume that Kevin Porter Jr. is the son of the former Bullets star or (2) that he would know about the criminal history of Porter Jr.’s real father? Obviously, it’s the former.
The history of the father might be known in Houston basketball circles, but not in D.C. Kevin Porter, the old Bullet, might not be well known to LeBron James, but every D.C. basketball fan of a certain age will have wondered whether he’s the father of Kevin Porter, Jr.
Consor shouldn’t have assumed that D.C.’s Kevin Porter is the father of the Houston player. But there’s no reason to doubt that, at least in the excitement of the moment, he did assume this. There’s every reason to doubt that he knew anything about Porter Jr.’s real father.
This isn’t the first time LeBron James has made a fool (or worse) of himself on social media. After the fatal police shooting of Ma’Khia Bryant in Columbus, Ohio, James tweeted a photo showing the officer involved in the shooting of Bryant with the caption: “YOU’RE NEXT #ACCOUNTABILITY.”
Unlike Consor, James didn’t apologize for his tweet, which essentially advocated murdering a police officer. Instead, he took the coward’s way out. He deleted the tweet, not because he thought there was anything wrong with what he wrote, but because it was “being used” by others to create more hate.
In addition, James has never apologized for being a “useful idiot” when it comes to Red China. James, the self-proclaimed social justice warrior, seems fine with Chinese suppression of freedom in Hong Kong and its imprisonment of more than one million Chinese Muslims. At a minimum, he thinks that preserving China’s full revenue stream to the NBA is more important than freedom for Hong Kong and physical safety for China’s Uighurs.
As for Consor, as things now stand he will continue his work on Wizards’ broadcasts.