The Black Mamba hissed, and this time it had nothing to do with asking for the ball or bemoaning the Lakers’ struggles.
It had everything to do with Kobe Bryant confronting a fan for using a homosexual slur.
“Just letting you know@PacSmoove @pookeo9 that using “your gay” as a way to put someone down ain’t ok!” Bryant tweeted. “#notcool delete that out ur vocab”
That inevitably opened up conversation on how Bryant was guilty of doing the same thing. In April 2011, Bryant shouted an anti-guy slur toward an official after picking up his 15th technical foul of the season. The incident went viral, prompted criticism from gay-rights groups and earned him a league-imposed $10,000 fine.
Afterwards, Bryant vowed he would avoid using such language out of frustration. He also promised he’d use his mistake as a platform to speak out on gay issues. Looks like Bryant is backing up those words with actions after a fan called him out on it.
“@onepercentofone @pookeo9 exactly! That wasn’t cool and was ignorant on my part,” Bryant tweeted. “I own it and learn from it and expect the same from others”
Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org