Sportswriter Peter Vecsey Uses Censored Racial Slur in a Notorious B.I.G.-Quoting Tweet About LeBron James

Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images
Peter Vecsey

Last night, NBA superstar LeBron James got into a minor spat with a couple of players on the New York Knicks, whose team James' Cleveland Cavaliers ultimately defeated in a close, tightly fought game. One of those players was Knicks center Enes Kanter, who got in LeBron's face after the latter collided on a play with Kanter's rookie teammate Frank Ntilikina.

The game of course saw a huge response on NBA Twitter, including from longtime sports columnist and former TV personality Peter Vecsey. Taking Kanter's side in the beef, he wrote that the Knicks center would not be "intimidated by LeBron" as a "guy who stood up 2 Tayyip Erdogan" -- the current president of Kanter's home country of Turkey (whom the center had previously called the "Hitler of our century"). 

He ended the tweet by commenting, "Imagine him being scared of a n***** who breathes the same air as him" -- the latter part referring to LeBron.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Like Kanter is gonna 2B intimidated by LeBron, guy who stood up 2 Tayyip Erdogan. Imagine him being scared of a n*****who breathes the same air as him</p>&mdash; Peter Vecsey (@PeterVecsey1) <a href="https://twitter.com/PeterVecsey1/status/930242659922391040?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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The comment, as many hip-hop fans noted, was a direct quote of a Notorious B.I.G. lyric (from sophomore album Life After Death's "N----s Bleed"). But Vecsey's failure to make the reference obvious -- as well as Vecsey's use of the N-word in any capacity, as a white person, particularly since the number of asterisks he used suggests the version of the word that ends in "-er" -- drew understandable backlash on Twitter.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">The Peter Vescey situation reminds me of a real uncomfortable conversation i had to have with a white friend of mine over rap lyrics.</p>&mdash; Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) <a href="https://twitter.com/jemelehill/status/930334371705323520?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">what an uncomfortable way to find out peter vecsey can quote biggie.<br><br>WUT <a href="https://t.co/dohbvKQRgo">https://t.co/dohbvKQRgo</a></p>&mdash; El Flaco (@bomani_jones) <a href="https://twitter.com/bomani_jones/status/930245133811048448?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">How many stupid and bad things does Peter Vescey have to do before people stop making excuses for his dumb ass <a href="https://t.co/Ljxc3GNPEh">pic.twitter.com/Ljxc3GNPEh</a></p>&mdash; Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) <a href="https://twitter.com/KyleNeubeck/status/930245805474238464?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Peter Vecsey is the only person on Twitter who missed that video of TNC talking about who can and who can&#39;t say it.</p>&mdash; Joel D. Anderson (@byjoelanderson) <a href="https://twitter.com/byjoelanderson/status/930248822650937344?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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Despite the controversy, Vecsey has not backed down from or deleted the original tweet, instead spending the morning retweeting the accounts of fans who support his usage of the lyric. He also responded to another writer last night who wrote a critical article about his tweet by calling it "bull shit" that "white people can't quote rap lyrics." See Vecsey's tweet, and some of those accounts he retweeted, below.  

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">So white people cant  quote rap lyrics?!?! Cant sing them?!?! Bull shit!!</p>&mdash; Peter Vecsey (@PeterVecsey1) <a href="https://twitter.com/PeterVecsey1/status/930261217217777664?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">If <a href="https://twitter.com/PeterVecsey1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@PeterVecsey1</a> can&#39;t quote Big, who can?</p>&mdash; Alan Damian Pruss (@ADP201) <a href="https://twitter.com/ADP201/status/930456317575204865?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">And, <a href="https://twitter.com/PeterVecsey1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@PeterVecsey1</a> has had that &quot;privilage&quot; here in new york city since the 1970&#39;s! If u dont believe me, come to Harlem, Brownsville, Bed Stuy, Queensbridge, the Bronx this summer, and ask for yourself.</p>&mdash; harlem kev 52 (@keaweku) <a href="https://twitter.com/keaweku/status/930394343994724354?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Ppl really out here trying to fry the god <a href="https://twitter.com/PeterVecsey1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@PeterVecsey1</a> cuz he used a biggie line praising the Knicks, get a fuckin life</p>&mdash; James Lannister (@MallyJames) <a href="https://twitter.com/MallyJames/status/930459897417945088?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 14, 2017</a></blockquote>
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Billboard has reached out to Vecsey for further comment.


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