ESPN employee fired after Jeremy Lin racial slur

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An ESPN writer was quickly fired after posting an offensive headline that appeared on the sports network’s website.

The title was posted on a story about Friday’s loss for the Knicks, which have recently been at the center of attention for Jeremy Lin’s star performances.

The headline, which read “Chink in the Armor,” was posted by ESPN editor Anthony Frederico at 2:30 a.m. but was removed 35 minutes later.

He lost his job and later apologized for the headline, telling the Daily News, “This had nothing to do with me being cute or punny. I’m so sorry that I offended people. I’m so sorry if I offended Jeremy.”

A similar gaffe was made by ESPN anchor Max Bretos when he asked on-air, “If there is a chink in the armor, where can Lin improve his game?”

The comment got him a 30 day suspension. A third incident happened when a commentator made a remark along the same lines on ESPN radio, though the network said the commentator is not an ESPN employee.

After the back to back snafus, ESPN issued this statement on its website:

At ESPN we are aware of three offensive and inappropriate comments made on ESPN outlets during our coverage of Jeremy Lin.

Saturday we apologized for two references. We have since learned of a similar reference Friday on ESPN Radio New York. The incidents were separate and different. We have engaged in a thorough review of all three and have taken the following action:

• The ESPN employee responsible for our Mobile headline has been dismissed.

• The ESPNEWS anchor has been suspended for 30 days.

• The radio commentator is not an ESPN employee.

We again apologize, especially to Mr. Lin. His accomplishments are a source of great pride to the Asian-American community, including the Asian-American employees at ESPN. Through self-examination, improved editorial practices and controls, and response to constructive criticism, we will be better in the future.

Lin is the fist American-born NBA player of Chinese or Taiwanese descent. Fans have been in awe of Lin as he led the Knicks to seven straight victories after previously spending most games on the bench.


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