The 29-year-old found himself receiving deserved scrutiny earlier this week when a video surfaced of him yelling an anti-Semitic slur while playing a video game on a Twitch live stream. The clip circulated around social media and was disturbing and offensive, to say the least.
The NBA released a statement soon after the video was first posted, announcing that the league office would be conducting an investigation into the incident. The Heat released a disciplinary action of their own, stating that Leonard will be away from the team indefinitely.
On Wednesday evening, long-time Miami player and resident Udonis Haslem spoke about the incident involving his teammate. Although the veteran Heat forward said that he'd never heard Leonard say anything of that nature before, he affirmed that offensive language can't be tolerated.
"We can't tolerate that here and right is right and wrong is wrong," Haslem said,
Udonis Haslem, on Meyers Leonard's comment, "We can't tolerate that here and right is right and wrong is wrong."
— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) March 11, 2021
">via Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
"We apologize. That won't tolerated here. I felt that. I have a lot of Jewish friends. They call me Udonis Haslem-berg at times."
Hopefully other players like Haslem will speak out about the harmful nature of Leonard's language. Already, NFL wide receiver Julian Edelman offered to have a conversation with the 29-year-old NBA player to educate him about anti-Semitism.
While the Heat await further disciplinary action from the league office, Leonard issued an apology of his own on Tuesday night. The nine-year NBA vet underwent season-ending shoulder surgery earlier this year, so won't make a return back to the court any time soon.
Given the severity of his actions, it's possible that he's already played his last game in Miami.