The former ESPN commentator who was fired after reportedly comparing tennis pro Venus Williams to a gorilla during the Australian Open has filed a wrongful termination lawsuit Tuesday against the famed sports network, reports The Washington Post.
From The Washington Post:
The ESPN tennis commentator [Doug Adler] who was fired last month after being accused of using racist language to describe Venus Williams’s playing style at the Australian Open has filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against the network.
…Adler’s controversial comment came on Jan. 18 during Williams’s 6-3, 6-2 victory over Stefanie Voegele when he said what many heard as, “You see Venus move in and put the gorilla effect on, charging.” Many on Twitter, including New York Times tennis writer Ben Rothenberg, reacted quickly, calling for the termination of the 58-year-old former pro, whom ESPN hired in 2008. Adler ended up apologizing on air the next day, and clarifying that he said “guerrilla effect,” referring to a style of play made famous in the 1990s.
The Times’s tennis correspondent echoed that statement, noting the special consideration commentators should give to Williams and her younger sister Serena, who have been subject to racism before. “Whether it was intended or not, people should know not to compare black people to African animals,” Rothenberg said to RTSport. “Sadly, there’s a history of it happening with the Williamses in particular, and I’d hope that everyone would be aware of those very basic sensitivities by 2017.”
Williams declined comment on the controversial incident, reports The Associated Press via Yahoo Sports.
SOURCE: The Washington Post, Yahoo Sports
ESPN Pundit Removed For Venus Williams ‘Gorilla’ Remark
#BlackGirlMagic: It’s Venus Williams Vs. Serena Williams At Wimbledon
Serena & Venus Williams’ Best Tennis Outfits Through The Years
25 photos Launch gallery
1. Remember when…Serena and Venus came onto the scene in the late 1990s wearing beads and braids?
1 of 25
2. Serena sports one of her classic Puma tennis dresses at the 1999 US Open.
2 of 25
3. Venus rocks a cutout tennis dress at the 1999 Grand Slam Cup.
3 of 25
4. A young Serena Williams wears a two-tone tennis dress at the 2000 Australian Open.
4 of 25
5. Venus rocks one of her signature cutout tennis outfits at Wimbledon in 2000.
5 of 25
6. Serena goes pastel purple at the eStyle.Com Classic in 2000.
6 of 25
7. Venus and Serena looked super stylish at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
7 of 25
8. Serena is pretty in pink at the 2001 French Open.
8 of 25
9. Venus rocks a spaghetti strap halter at the 2001 US Open.
9 of 25
10. Serena celebrates her 2002 Wimbledon win in a traditional (but not-so-traditional) white tennis outfit.
10 of 25
11. Serena is just a peach at the 2002 Home Depot Championships.
11 of 25
12. Serena’s orange and white 2003 Wimbledon Puma outfit.
12 of 25
13. Serena rocks a metallic empire waist at the Women’s Telecom Italia Tennis Masters in 2004.
13 of 25
14. Serena wins in her gorgeous 2004 Wimbledon outfit.
14 of 25
15. Serena rocks a denim tennis outfit at the 2004 US Open Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day.
15 of 25
16. Serena celebrates in this cute Nike ensemble at the 2005 Australian Open.
16 of 25
17. Serena experiments with a little color blocking at the 2009 French Open.
17 of 25
18. Venus gets sexy on the court at the 2010 Sony Ericsson Open.
18 of 25
19. Venus rocks a double slit tennis dress while playing with her sister at the 2010 Australian Open.
19 of 25
20. Serena goes pink on pink at the 2013 US Open.
20 of 25
21. Serena looks gorgeous in pink cheetah at the 2014 US Open.
21 of 25
22. More cheetah for Serena at the 2014 US Open.
22 of 25
23. Serena wears a yellow crop top at the 2016 Australian Open.
23 of 25
24. Serena and Venus get braided up in preparation for Rio Olympics.
24 of 25
25. Serena Williams represents Team USA at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
25 of 25