New York Knicks forward Marcus Morris created an uproar by saying Memphis Grizzlies forward Jae Crowder has "female tendencies" after a Wednesday game.
There was an incident in the final minute of the game at New York when Crowder stole the ball with the Grizzlies leading by 18. He dribbled to the right wing to take a 3-point shot, and Elfrid Payton of the Knicks ferociously knocked Crowder to the court as he shot.
That led to a skirmish between the teams, and Morris expressed his dislike of Crowder in a postgame interview.
"I think dude is just, he plays the game a different way -- a lot of female tendencies on the court," Morris told reporters. "Flopping, throwing his head back the entire game. It's a man's game, and you just get tired of it at the end of the day. At the end, it was very unprofessional. ...
"When you step back and shoot a 3 and try to rub it in that they're winning, it's unprofessional. His game is soft. He's soft. That's how he carries (himself). It's just very woman-like."
Morris apologized for his comments later Wednesday night.
"I apologize for using the term 'female tendencies,'" Morris said on Twitter. "I have the upmost respect for women and everything they mean to us. It was a Heat of the moment response and I never intended for any Women to feel as though in anyway I'm disrespecting them. Again I apologize with my comments."
The apology didn't cause the controversy to simmer. In fact, WNBA star Liz Cambage took issue with Morris.
Cambage respond to a video of Morris' comments with "excuse me @MookMorris2 ?"
The Las Vegas Aces center had this response to Morris' apology: "what about you saying 'its a mans game' or 'woman like'"
Then she made it very clear how she felt: "FEMALE TENDENCIES WINS GAMES THOUGH"
Crowder responded to Cambage's remark with "AMEN.!! 100 (percent)."
Morris later offered an apology to Cambage.
"I apologize if I offended you wit my comments in anyway," Morris responded. "I truly respect women in every aspect in life. Wasn't raised like that. I'm a big fan of yours and everything you have done for the WNBA and basketball in general."
Longtime WNBA star Sue Bird told Fox 5 New York: "It's extremely disappointing ..."
Amber Cox, vice president of the WNBA's Connecticut Sun, also weighed in and took a shot at Morris' education (he played for the University of Kansas). She is a Missouri native.
"'Female tendencies' means you're tough, right?" Cox said on Twitter. "I'd like to see Marcus (or any man) give birth. Hopefully he gets a call from his single mom tonight to explain that 'woman-like' is actually the best compliment you can give someone. kU genius on display here."
ESPN analyst Tim Legler criticized Crowder for stealing the inbounds pass and shooting a 3-pointer, and Crowder responded.
"AYE TIM WITH ALL DUE RESPECT I ONLY PLAY ONE WAY AND THATS HARD TIL THE BUZZER SOUNDS," Crowder wrote. "IM SORRY IF IT DISGUSTS YOU. I KNOW KNICKS ARE YOUR TEAM BUT U SHOULD TELL THEM TO PLAY HARDER AND LESS TALKING.!"
--Field Level Media