From Comcast SportsNetNEW ORLEANS (AP) -- San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver apologized Wednesday night for anti-gay remarks he made during a Super Bowl media day interview a day earlier."The derogatory comments I made yesterday were a reflection of thoughts in my head, but they are not how I feel," he said in a statement released by the team. "It has taken me seeing them in print to realize that they are hurtful and ugly. Those discriminating feelings are truly not in my heart. Further, I apologize to those who I have hurt and offended, and I pledge to learn and grow from this experience."The 49ers said earlier Wednesday they had addressed the comments, but didn't elaborate on whether the second-year player would face disciplinary action or a fine.During an interview Tuesday at the Superdome, Culliver responded to questions from comedian Artie Lange by saying he wouldn't welcome a gay player in the locker room. He also said the 49ers didn't have any homosexual players and, if they did, those players should leave."The San Francisco 49ers reject the comments that were made yesterday, and have addressed the matter with Chris," the team said. "There is no place for discrimination within our organization at any level. We have and always will proudly support the LGBT community."Culliver planned to formally address his remarks during a news conference during the 49ers' media availability Thursday morning, according to his personal public relations representative, Theodore Palmer.The interview Tuesday began with Lange asking Culliver about his sexual plans with women during Super Bowl week. Lange followed up with a question about whether Culliver would consider pursuing a gay man."I don't do the gay guys, man. I don't do that," Culliver said during the 1-minute taped interview. "Ain't got no gay people on the team. They gotta get up outta here if they do. Can't be with that sweet stuff."Lange asked Culliver to reiterate his thoughts, to which the player said, "It's true." He added he wouldn't welcome a gay teammate -- no matter how talented."Nah. Can't be ... in the locker room, nah," he said. "You've gotta come out 10 years later after that."The 24-year-old Culliver, a third-round draft pick in 2011 out of South Carolina, made 47 tackles with two interceptions and a forced fumble this season while starting six games for the NFC champion Niners (13-4-1).He had his first career postseason interception in San Francisco's 28-24 win at Atlanta for the NFC title.The 49ers participate in the NFL's "It Gets Better" anti-bullying campaign. The city of San Francisco and progressive, open-minded Bay Area are home to a large gay community.Three organizations working for LGBT inclusion in sports -- Athlete Ally, You Can Play, and GLAAD -- reacted to Culliver's remarks and later acknowledged his apology."Chris Culliver's comments were disrespectful, discriminatory and dangerous, particularly for the young people who look up to him," said Athlete Ally Executive Director Hudson Taylor. "His words underscore the importance of the athlete ally movement and the key role that professional athletes play in shaping an athletic climate that affirms and includes gay and lesbian players. Culliver's current views are as marginal as they are misguided. We're seeing more and more NFL players take a stand against homophobia in sports through our advocacy and we know that support at this level is only going to grow. It is becoming clear that discrimination is on the fringe and has absolutely no place in sports."
LANDOVER, Md. - Kirk Cousins threw two touchdown passes to compensate for a pick-6, and the Washington Redskins beat the New York Giants 20-10 on Thursday night on a drab field in a drab game between two injury-depleted teams that did not look ready for prime time. Click here to read more.
That Celtics win streak was dope. Let’s map out an even longer one that probably won’t happen.
Nobody’s actually expecting them to keep the pace they’ve established with their recently concluded run. Still, with 63 games remaining, there’s still time for the Celtics to have up to three win streaks of even longer than 16 games. So, because it’s the holidays and the holidays are all about positivity (fun move you’ve probably picked up from movies: You can say “the holidays are all about _____” and just put in whatever you want and it will work), let’s map out the next win streak.
- What the C's are thankful for
- BLAKELY'S takeaways: Moving on after the streak
- Little things prove costly in first loss in a month
A big part of the Celtics’ 16-gamer (and get ready to say “duh”) is that they were better than a lot of the teams they beat. But they also beat one team that was without question better than them and beat a few teams that could certainly beat them on any given night.
Here’s a rough breakdown of the 16 games:
- Even if they didn’t go as smoothly as anticipated, nine games were against what could be classified as easy prey based on their rosters and how those teams were playing: The 76ers, the Knicks, the Kings, the Hawks twice, the Lakers, the Hornets, the Nets and the Mavericks.
- Let’s say that the Heat (whom they played and beat during the streak before Miami snapped the streak Wednesday) and Magic weren’t perceived pushovers, but rather unremarkable opponents.
- Four games were against what one could call worthy opponents for the Celtics: the Bucks, the Spurs (though they were missing Kawhi Leonard), the Thunder and the Raptors.
- Nobody was ever pretending the Celtics were actually better than the Warriors.
So that breaks the 16 games into one game against an unequivocally superior opponent, four against worthy opponents, two against unremarkable teams, and nine joke books.
Of course, there are several variables that can be thrown into that, such as the fact that the C’s beat one of the aforementioned good teams (Toronto) without Kyrie Irving and nearly lost to two of those trash teams (Charlotte and Dallas). You can’t predict injuries just like you shouldn’t predict win streaks, but let’s take all the information we have and try to find the next one:
Friday vs. Magic (trash; probable win)
Saturday at Pacers (unremarkable; potential loss)
A back-to-back after a holiday with the second game on the road against a team that’s been way better than expected? I don’t like the sound of it.
Nov. 27 vs. Pistons (worthy opponent; potential loss)
Are they overrated? Maybe, but Pistons currently hold the second spot in the Eastern Conference. Whether it’s the Pacers or the Pistons, I think this short stretch prevents a speed bump. The streak might have to wait.
STARTING NOV. 30
Nov. 30 against Sixers (upgraded to unremarkable based on recent play; still win)
Remember: The last streak started against the Sixers. Hopefully, Kyrie pays that fans’ way to Boston for a halftime reunion.
Dec. 2 vs. Suns (trash; win)
Dec. 4 vs. Bucks (worthy opponent; win)
Celtics aren’t losing to those sons of guns twice at home.
Dec. 6 vs. Dallas (trash; win)
Can you get revenge on a team for almost beating you? Yes. The Celtics will.
Dec. 8 at Spurs (worthy opponent; win)
Until I see Kawhi on the court, this one is a win.
Dec. 10 at Detroit (worthy opponent; win)
The Pistons play the Spurs, Bucks and Warriors the three previous games. They’ll be all tuckered out.
Dec. 11 through Dec. 23 (mix of unremarkable and trash opponents; seven wins)
Dec. 25 vs. Wizards (worthy opponent; win)
Terry Rozier becomes a household name with a Christmas performance for the ages.
Dec. 27 at Charlotte (trash; win)
Dec. 28 vs. Houston (worthy opponent; win)
Dec. 31 vs. Brooklyn (trash; loss)
The Celtics are 0-1 the days prior to holidays this season. The streak ends at 18.
THE REST OF THE SEASON
We'll assess it then, but for now, let's say undefeated (including playoffs).