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“What I said was just hurtful” - Tim Hardaway Sr. remorseful for anti-gay comments after 15 years

Tim Hardaway Sr. revealed he was homophobic. 15 years later, he admits his views have changed and now supports the LGBT community.
Tim Hardaway as the Detroit Pistons' assistant coach

Tim Hardaway

Tim Hardaway Sr. offered his apologies 15 years after making anti-gay statements in an interview. 

“l am homphobic”

In an interview in 2007, Hardaway didn’t mince his words when asked about his opinion on whether he would allow a gay player on his team or not. Tim described himself as homophobic and that he hates them.

"You know, I hate gay people, so I let it be known. I don't like gay people and I don't like to be around gay people. I am homophobic. I don't like it. It shouldn't be in the world or in the United States," Hardaway said.

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The former Miami Heat guard added he wouldn’t want gay players on his team and wouldn’t share a locker room with them. The statements angered some and prompted a response from the NBA. Tim was dropped from the All-Star weekend at that time. Hardaway offered apologies, but the damage had been done. It changed his career, and apparently, those words still haunt him.

Tim Hardaway Sr. issues an apology

Fast forward to 2022, the issue of his anti-gay comments had been brought up in light of his upcoming induction to the Hall of Fame this September. Tim remains regretful for what he’s done. But unlike before, he revealed the hate toward the LGBT community had everything to do with his upbringing.

“I never tried to talk bad about them or do hateful stuff. It was just my upbringing in church. But I’ll tell you this: It was so wrong of me, and people have suffered. I had to grow up and really do some soul-searching. What I said was just hurtful," Hardaway said.

In today’s cancel era, the former member of Run TMC wouldn’t have survived the backlash, let alone play for many years after making those controversial comments. But now, Tim admits his views have changed after learning more about LGBT situations.

Some members of the community welcomed the character development. Tim Hardaway Sr. owned up to his fault and immersed himself in learning more. Former NBA player Jason Collins, who came out as gay in 2013, even lauded Hardaway’s efforts.

People make mistakes, but basketball players need to be more responsible in their opinions. What Hardaway Sr. did was wrong, and it was a learning moment for him. So let’s just hope he’s the last NBA player to say those nasty things. 

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