ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowksi emailed Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyOvernight Defense: House Dems offer M for Army to rename bases | Bill takes aim at money for Trump’s border wall | Suspect in custody after shooting at Marine training facility Should the United States withdraw from the WTO? Defense spending bill includes M for Army to change Confederate base names MORE‘s (R-Mo.) office an F-bomb on Friday after the lawmaker criticized rules on NBA player jerseys.
Hawley tweeted out a screenshot of the email, which reads “F— you.”
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) July 10, 2020
Wojnarowski apologized in a tweet Friday, saying he “made a regrettable mistake.”
“I’m sorry for the way I handled myself and I am reaching out immediately to Senator Hawley to apologize directly,” he said.
ESPN is addressing the issue with Wojnarowski internally, a spokesperson told The Hill.
“This is completely unacceptable behavior and we do not condone it,” they said. “It is inexcusable for anyone working for ESPN to respond in the way Adrian did to Senator Hawley.”
The expletive came in response to a letter from Hawley condemning the list of messages that NBA players are approved to wear on the back of their jerseys when the league restarts in Orlando, Fla., later this month.
The Missouri lawmaker claimed that the NBA is censoring support for law enforcement officers or the military and any criticism of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Hawley has previously criticized the NBA for allegedly bending to the CCP’s demands after Houston Rocket’s general manager Daryl Morey tweeted support for protesters in Hong Kong last summer.
The NBA and National Basketball Players Association reportedly approved social justice messages to replace player’s names earlier this week.
The list is as follows, according to ESPN’s Marc Spears: Black Lives Matter; Say Their Names; Vote; I Can’t Breathe; Justice; Peace; Equality; Freedom; Enough; Power to the People; Justice Now; Say Her Name; Sí Se Puede (Yes We Can); Liberation; See Us; Hear Us; Respect Us; Love Us; Listen; Listen to Us; Stand Up; Ally; Anti-Racist; I Am A Man; Speak Up; How Many More; Group Economics; Education Reform; and Mentor.
There is no evidence to suggest messages backing law enforcement or criticizing the CCP were somehow vetoed by the league.
NBA players have been active in protests against police brutality across the country following the killing of George Floyd.
In Washington, D.C., Wizard’s all stars John Wall and Bradley Beal led a Black Lives Matter protest to the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial.