John Focke has been fired from his radio play-by-play career with the NBA's Charlotte Hornets, with his dismissal coming following an August tweet in which Focke used N-word.
The Hornets announced Focke's firing Thursday, justifying the decision "due to a violation of the organization's social media policy."
The former Timberwolves and Lynx broadcaster was tweeting about an NBA playoff game in August when typed the N-word instead of "Nuggets" when referring to the game between the Utah Jazz and Denver Nuggets.
“Shot making in this Jazz-(N-word) game is awesome! Murray and Mitchell going back and forth what a game!” read Focke's tweet, which was subsequently deleted.
Focke was suspended indefinitely pending an investigation by the Hornets. He also apologized, saying he wasn't sure how he "mistyped" the team's name.
“Earlier today I made a horrific error while attempting to tweet about the Denver-Utah game. I don’t know how I mistyped, I had (and have) no intention of ever using that word," Focke wrote. “I take full responsibility for my actions. I have been sick to my stomach about it ever since. I’m truly sorry that this happened and I apologize to those I offended.”
Focke was not retained by the Hornets despite numerous people supporting him after the mistake, including Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve and assistant coach/former Lynx All-Star forward Rebekkah Brunson.
"I know John to be one of the kindest, gentlest, good-hearted individuals I've ever worked with," Reeve wrote after the incident. "Not only do I know unequivocally that John Focke is not a racist and does not use racist language, I KNOW that his heart is one that is filled with love for EVERYONE."
Prior to taking the Hornets' job in April 2020, Focke was the play-by-play radio voice of the Lynx dating back 2012.
He was also the executive producer and studio host for the Minnesota Timberwolves Radio Network since 2007, in addition to working in TV as the host of "Wolves Weekly" on FOX Sports North.