"I love to come on your show and provide more context in what I'm saying because I think a lot of you seem to miss my point," Bryant tweeted in a message that directly tagged Smith late Thursday. "I don't mind talking about nothing I've ever been through to validate my point even more on the unfair treatment against certain athletes in the media world."
The former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver added, "Btw I chose not to back to Baltimore I got the text messages to prove it. I'm a man of integrity. I'm a man of respect. Me controlling my own narrative. Showing the world who I am. Means more than anything to me."
Bryant loudly criticized ESPN journalist and NBA Today host Malika Andrews for not covering the Giddey scandal quickly enough. Giddey, an Australian point guard for Oklahoma City Thunder, is under investigation over allegations that he had an inappropriate relationship with an underage girl. 35-year-old Bryant suggested that Andrews went out of her way to "crucify" Brandon Miller, a Charlotte Hornets rookie, who was hit with a wrongful death lawsuit last month by the family of Jamea Harris, a 23-year-old woman who died at a shooting in January near the University of Alabama campus.
Amid his tweets late Thursday, Bryant also offered an apology of sorts. "I ain’t talking about the situation no more unless @stephenasmith @malika_andrews wanna talk on air. But I do wanna apologize for coming so aggressive at @malika_andrews. But I do wonder if she even realizes how certain things look? … I’ve experienced unfairness and saw white athletes get a slap on the wrist for doing shit I know that will get you kicked off a team in a heart beat. I really hate to make it seem like a black and white thing but the unfairness is real."
On The Stephen A. Smith Show, the outspoken host suggested it would have been ridiculous for Andrews to not bring up the charges against Miller on Draft Day. “In this Josh Giddey situation, because the situation is so sensitive, you can’t go on the air with a strong opinion, sounding accusatory as if you’re indicting someone when an investigation is still open,” Smith explained. “We don’t know.”
Following Bryant's latest comments, journalist Jemele Hill chimed in and suggested that his "tone and approach to Malika was out of line." She added in her tweet, "You made it personal by bringing in how she was raised. You didn't bring any of that energy to any of the male broadcasters. She wasn't on air when the news about Josh Giddey happened and it [was] addressed when she returned."
Hill also responded to another person who wrote that Bryant was accusing Andrews of "being anti-Black American."
Hill wrote, "Maybe some of y'all need to do some introspection about why you're so in your feelings about a woman doing her job."
Bryant quote tweeted Hill's first post responding to him and said that he's since apologized.
"But how I feel remain," he wrote. "I'll go at whoever however male or female. Ain't shit sweet. Y'all gotta know by now idgaf for the right reasons and it's at an all time high right now. I have high respect for you Jemele let's stay reasonable."
Andrews addressed the allegations against Giddey on NBA Today on Monday, the same day Bryant criticized her.
Smith recently explained why he hasn't spoken about the allegations yet. "[Giddey is] 21, we don't know how old she is," Smith said. "We don't know anything, we know there's an investigation going on. That's all we know. We don't know anything else. You know why Stephen A. hasn't said anything? Because you could get sued, idiots! You don't just go out there running your damn mouth over something this serious."