Stephen Jackson slammed for saying ESPN gave Maria Taylor ‘sympathy job’ over Rachel Nichols

'I can’t blame Rachel, I love Rachel, and I’m going to stand behind her ... And I’m going to stand behind Maria, too. But ESPN, ya'll are some suckers,' the former NBA player said


                            Stephen Jackson slammed for saying ESPN gave Maria Taylor ‘sympathy job’ over Rachel Nichols
Former NBA player Stephen Jackson slammed EPSN over the Rachel Nichols and Maria Taylor controversy and, in turn, was criticized (Getty Images/ Frazer Harrison/ Noam Galai/ Megan Varner)

Former NBA player Stephen Jackson has come out in defense of Rachel Nichols, who recently found herself embroiled in controversy over a leaked phone call conversation with Adam Mendelsohn and Rich Paul. In 2020, Nichols had made problematic remarks regarding her Black colleague, Maria Taylor, and alleged that ESPN selected her to host its NBA coverage in 2020 because of her race.

And now, Jackson has defended Nichols and slammed ESPN. The 43-year-old civil rights activist alleged that the sports media house chose Taylor over Nichols to “make themselves look good” amid Black Lives Matter and after George Floyd's murder that happened in 2020. In an Instagram video, he said, “We all ramble. We say things when we are frustrated. And you know, Rachel [Nichols] did deserve that job. It’s just plain and simple. I talked to Rachel and I know a lot of things she was saying out of frustration because ESPN put her in a bad position. And they even put Maria [Taylor] in a position trying to give her a sympathy job.”

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Jackson, a friend of George Floyd who has appeared several times on Nichols’ ‘The Jump’, continued: “They were trying to make themselves look good because all the Black Lives Matter and George Floyd stuff was going on. So ESPN tried to make themselves look good by taking the job from Rachel that she had already had, that they already told her she had, that she deserved, and give it to Maria just to make themselves look good. It wasn’t a genuine job they wanted to give Maria. ESPN is behind all of this. It’s all their fault. I can’t blame Rachel, I love Rachel, and I’m going to stand behind her. I spoke to her. And I’m going to stand behind Maria, too. But ESPN, ya'll are some suckers ... y'all did this.”



 

He posted three other videos on his social media account addressing the controversy and stated, “A lot of y'all ... still livin' off your mama, still livin' in your mama house and wondering why you ain't winning or 'I ain't got nothin' going on.' I'm gonna hit y'all with a harsh truth: I am the face for equality, but I also am the face of being Black and proud and being strong and goin' to get what's mine. Not askin' no White person or nobody to give me nothin'. I'm gonna take what's mine, like I been doin'.”

Former NBA player Stephen Jackson, a friend of George Floyd's, speaks during a rally in front of the Hennepin County Government Center on June 11, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The rally was a demand for police reform and justice for George Floyd and other black men and women who have been killed by law enforcement. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

But people on the internet seemed clearly not happy with Jackson’s outrage. One user tweeted, “Not shocking coming from Stephen Jackson who has a history of colorism.” The second one said, “It all makes sense now. Rachel Nichols holds hold black women back while Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson are paid to tear down black men: THE GO ALONG / GET ALONG GANG. Kwame Brown was right.” “Somebody throw the whole pot at Stephen Jackson he’s talking too much. #RachelNichols #mommascooking,” a third added.



 



 



 

Former NBA player Stephen Jackson, a friend of George Floyd's, speaks at a memorial on June 3, 2020, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

Jackson’s comment section on Instagram was also full of disagreement from people. One person wrote, “Frustration should never make you say or agree with subtle racist tropes my G.” Another added: “Be that as it may we always say white people true colors come to light when they are angry or drunk and she still basically said Maria didn’t deserve the job.”

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