Announcer Yanked from Broadcast Booth over 'Inappropriate' Comment

A Minnesota sports play-by-play announcer was abruptly pulled from a hockey broadcast after he made a comment about “lynching ropes.”

Doug McLeod, who does play-by-play for the University of Minnesota hockey team on Fox Sports North, was in the booth for the Minnesota Boys’ State Hockey Tournament.

As the Minnesota Star Tribune reports, McLeod’s offending remark came during the Class 2A quarterfinals game between White Bear Lake and Blaine.

After Cole Hansen scored his second goal to give Blaine a 3-0 lead in the second period, McLeod said something that initially seemed to go unnoticed by his broadcasting colleague, Lou Nanne.

“We’ve had one natural hat trick already in the state tournament, that was in the Class A quarterfinals yesterday. And I’m not saying he’s going to get one before all the White Bear fans get out the lynching ropes,” he said.

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To be fair, McLeod’s comment seemed offhand and without any racial maliciousness. Hansen is white.

On the other hand, obviously, the remark was still completely out of line.

McLeod’s comment is hardly as defensible as Iowa sports announcer Gary Dolphin’s usage of the term “King Kong” to describe a black basketball player.

Despite getting suspended, Dolphin’s defenders argued that he was using the phrase as a compliment for a dominant player. Dolphin will be reinstated at the end of the basketball season.

McLeod has not been suspended — yet — for his remarks, but the backlash was still swift.

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Once the remarks gained some public attention, McLeod was pulled off the air.

“Earlier in this broadcast this afternoon, there was an inappropriate comment made,” Tom Hauser, who was the studio host for the tournament, said to the viewers. “If you were offended by this comment, we sincerely apologize.”

Should McLeod be suspended for his comments?

Being a sports announcer is not an easy job by any stretch. Being able to cover the action in a succinct and timely manner, while also providing engaging commentary, is a difficult task. Mistakes and slip-ups are bound to happen.

Even given that, however, making a “lynching” comment, no matter how offhand, in 2019 to describe a sporting event is just a terrible idea.

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Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than two years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics.
Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than two years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics. He graduated with a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona. He is an avid fan of sports, video games, politics and debate.
Birthplace
Hawaii
Education
Class of 2010 University of Arizona. BEAR DOWN.
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, Korean
Topics of Expertise
Sports, Entertainment, Science/Tech




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