Gayle King’s interview with WNBA legend Lisa Leslie resulted in a variety of emotions for countless people. Some were angry the veteran journalist had the nerve to bring up Kobe Bryant’s 2003 sexual assault case considering the NBA superstar had just died, while others felt King was completely justified and fair in her questioning.
Snoop Dogg, however, wasn’t one of them. He condemned both King and Oprah Winfrey, who has been under scrutiny for her connection to a documentary about one of Russell Simmons’ sexual assault accusers. And he wasn’t alone. 50 Cent also questioned King’s motives, saying, “I don’t understand what the goal is.”
On Monday (February 9), the Def Jam Recordings co-founder thanked those who stood up for Bryant.
“A very sincere THANK YOU for ALL of those who spoke up to defend our brother,” he wrote alongside a clip of himself with the former L.A. Laker. “Let’s not allow any more negativity into our bubble of love. This man represented the very best of we have to offer. He was a tremendous athlete and a flourishing artist, producer and business man.
“He exuded happiness and was full of compassion. Most importantly, he was a loving family man, and a ROLE MODEL for black men all over the world. God bless the legacy of @kobebryant. Prayers for the Bryant family and all those who lost their lives in this tragic accident.”
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A very sincere THANK YOU for ALL of those who spoke up to defend our brother. ?? Let’s not allow any more negativity into our bubble of love. ❤️ This man represented the very best of we have to offer. He was a tremendous athlete and a flourishing artist, producer and business man. He exuded happiness and was full of compassion. Most importantly, he was a loving family man, and a ROLE MODEL for black men all over the world. ? God bless the legacy of @kobebryant. Prayers for the Bryant family and all those who lost their lives in this tragic accident.
Controversy ensued when CBS This Morning aired a clip of King’s recent interview with Leslie in which King asked the seasoned athlete if Bryant’s sexual assault case makes his legacy “complicated” for her.
“It’s not complicated for me,” Leslie said. She later added. “I don’t think it’s something that we should keep hanging over his legacy.”
#GayleKing speaks. And clarifies on her interview with Lisa Leslie about Kobe's court case. But, yall probably don't care. Yall like being mad about something. pic.twitter.com/XkljhhkhXF
— M. Will (@mwillmusicsoul) February 6, 2020
King was livid and insisted CBS essentially threw her under the bus.
“I know that if I had only seen the clip that you saw, I’d be extremely angry with me too,” King said. “I am mortified. I am embarrassed and I am very angry. Unbeknownst to me, my network put up a clip from a very wide-ranging interview — totally taken out of context — and when you see it that way, it’s very jarring. It’s jarring to me. I didn’t even know anything about it.”
Snoop — who received some strong words from former U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice — has since denied threatening King in any way, shape or form.
“Here’s a message for the people that need to know,” he said. “I’m a non-violent person. When I said what I said, I spoke for the people who felt like Gayle was very disrespectful towards Kobe Bryant and his family. Now with that being said, what’d I look like want some harm to come to a 70-year-old woman? I was raised way better than that.”
He continued, “I didn’t want no harm to come to her, I didn’t threaten her. All I did was say check it out, you out of pocket for what you doing and we watching you. Have a little bit more respect for Vanessa, her babies and Kobe Bryant’s legacy.”
Simmons evidently feels similarly.