LeBron James has made a habit out of using the word "retarded" to describe things. And apparently, it's a habit that has become very, very hard for him to break.
Back in May 2011, James referred to a reporter's question as "retarded" during a postgame interview. And many advocacy groups got on him about his use of the word. So he apologized for using it the following day—"I want to apologize for using the 'R' word," he said—and promised not to use it again. But last night, James did just that during a pregame interview prior to the Thunder/Heat game.
"That is retarded to me," he said when he was asked if he thought Kevin Durant had become better at passing the ball this season. "Kevin Durant is great at being a passer."
And James didn't need any advocacy groups to call him out this time to realize what he had done. Shortly after the Thunder disposed of the Heat last night, James held a press conference and wasted absolutely no time apologizing for using the word "retarded" during the pregame interview.
"I used the word retarded before," he said. "Obviously, it had nothing to do with kids that are underprivileged. There's no knock on them. It's a word that's been around for a long time where I grew. It's a bad habit, so I try to break it. If I use it again, I'm going to try to do my best not to. I mean no disrespect."
We give James credit for apologizing for using the word before anyone really asked him to. But he obviously has to find a way to avoid using it in the future.