Kenny Smith chimes in.
NBA analyst and former ballplayer Kenny Smith has revealed his own thoughts on Gayle King's controversial question about Kobe Bryant during a recent interview with WNBA star Lisa Leslie.
To recap, it was in a sit-down last week with Leslie that King brought up the late Bryant, who passed away in a helicopter crash along with eight others, including 13-year-old Gianna Bryant. King proceeded to bring up Bryant's 2003 rape case, asking Leslie if she believed that it left a negative impact on Bryant's legacy. Leslie's response was along the lines of believing that "the media should be more respectful at this time."
"If you had questions about it, you’ve had many years to ask him that," Leslie told King, elaborating on the fact that Bryant's case was dismissed. "I don’t think it’s something that we should keep hanging over his legacy. I mean, it went to trial."
Since then, King has caught the ire of the many, even reportedly receiving death threats over her comments. TMZ most recently caught up with Kenny Smith and asked his opinion on the situation as he confirmed that death threats were out of line, but concluded that the question was inappropriate considering the timing.
"Death threats are a little extreme—a lot extreme. But it's unfortunate that during this time of grieving, I think the timing of the interview totally was off," Smith told the outlet. "With everyone still grieving, and so to have an interview that was led in that direction, I think the timing was insensitive."
He added: "I thought Lisa did a great job of answering the questions. She could only talk about what she knew and what she felt he was to her, and what she saw."
Without endorsing King's termination, as many have, Smith did add that he believes that "you have to be accountable for your actions."