Family Feud host Steve Harvey has been blasted by fans and critics for a racist term he used during ESPN's pre-game coverage of Game 3 of the NBA Finals on Wednesday night.
While discussing the two teams, the television personality ended up using an unfortunate term to describe the Golden State Warriors, and met with backlash from certain viewers.
When entering the night, the Warriors were up 2-0 against Harvey's hometown team, and Harvey made the point that there was nothing the Cavaliers could do to stop them from winning. Harvey described the players as "gorillas," a phrase often used as a racial slur against African Americans.
"You can't stop them," Harvey said. "You've got to outscore them. You can't stop all them boys. They've got too many gorillas on that team. They're coming to play man. They got 800-pound gorillas on that team."
In 2017 ESPN fired tennis commentator Doug Alder for using a similar term when describing Venus Williams' style of play. Angered viewers who heard Harvey's comment brought that up, accusing ESPN of having a double standard.
ESPN fired Doug Adler for using the phrase “guerrilla effect” during a Venus Williams tennis match. Well, Steve Harvey just called the entire Golden State Warrior team gorillas on Cavs-Warriors pregame. https://t.co/tVrN8Qe7dQ— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) June 7, 2018
"ESPN fired Doug Adler for using the phrase 'guerrilla effect' during a Venus Williams tennis match. Well, Steve Harvey just called the entire Golden State Warrior team gorillas on Cavs-Warriors pregame," former Fox Sports 1 analyst Clay Travis wrote.
God damn. Steve Harvey really just said to Steven A. smith that the Warriors are a bunch of Gorillas ? imagine if Bryan Windhorst said that lmao— TheGooseIsLoose (@silvasgoose) June 6, 2018
"God damn. Steve Harvey really just said to Steven A. smith that the Warriors are a bunch of Gorillas [laughing emoji] imagine if Bryan Windhorst said that," a viewer tweeted.
So Steve Harvey just called the Warriors "800 pounds of gorillas"... how soon until he gets fired?— Billy Rogers (@wolverine2_4) June 6, 2018
"So Steve Harvey just called the Warriors '800 pounds of gorillas'... how soon until he gets fired."
While other viewers defended the comment saying it was about context, Harvey opted not to address the issue. The Warriors went on to sweep the Cavaliers 4-0 in the series to win the NBA Championship.
Harvey will host Sunday's upcoming episode of Celebrity Family Feud, which will feature the Kardashian family. He said in an interview with Ellen DeGeneres after the taping that Kim Kardashian's husband Kanye West was the most fun of the bunch during the game.0comments
"Kanye was the best Family Feud celebrity panelist we've ever had on the show. He loves the show," Harvey said. "His people said, 'Steve , this is the most Kanye has ever smiled since we've been working for him.' Kanye smiled! When I introduced him, he smiled. Tune in and you'll see Kanye smiling."
The episode will air at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday night.