The Phoenix Suns issued a statement regarding potential media scrutiny into the franchise’s workplace culture, denying that the organization or owner Robert Sarver has a history of racism or sexism.

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The statement sent Friday said the organization is aware that ESPN is working on a story accusing the organization of misconduct on “various topics.” The Sons responded that they were “completely baseless claims” and that “the documentary evidence in our possession and eyewitness accounts directly refutes the reporter’s allegations, and we are preparing answers to their questions.”

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Sarwar – a Phoenix businessman – has owned Sun since 2004.

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Sons general manager James Jones, who is Black, said of the team’s response: “Whatever said does not describe Robert Sarver, I know, respect and like – it just isn’t. “

The franchise is coming off one of the most successful seasons in its history, making it to the NBA Finals with Devin Booker, Chris Paul and Deandre Ayton before losing in six games to the Milwaukee Bucks. He has made it to the final three times in 1976, 1993 and 2021, but has never won the championship.

Suns coach Monty Williams, while addressing the media Friday ahead of the team’s game against the Lakers in Los Angeles, said he was aware of the potential report, but said he “doesn’t want to comment about it until then”. until I have time to process a lot of information and get everything I need to know about the position.”

He said that he did not expect the situation to be disturbing for the team.

“Nothing will invade or erode our culture,” Williams said. “It’s something we’ve said since day one. Win, lose, we get to play basketball, we get the hoop and that’s not going to change.”

Phoenix Suns and Mercury owner Robert Sarwar attends Game Two of the 2021 WNBA Finals at the Footprint Center on October 13, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona.

The possible investigation came to light on Friday when league analyst Jordan Schultz posted a message on social media saying that the league was preparing a “huge” story and if “there is sufficient evidence to support such claims, there is a real chance that the league will forcibly remove Sarwar.”

Sarwar and Sun replied with a lengthy statement. Sarwar, 59, also owns the Phoenix Mercury of the WNBA.

“While I can’t begin to figure out how to respond to some vague suggestions made by mostly anonymous voices, I can certainly tell you that some claim me completely to my nature and the character of Sun/Mercury. seem counterintuitive. workplace and I can tell you they never, never happened,” Sarwar said.

Not even a full week into the season, the NBA now has another potentially important issue — even without knowing the full scope of the allegations that the Suns say are coming.

The Sons’ statements came two days after Boston center Enes Kanter called for Tibetan independence, comments prompting a Chinese broadcast partner to stop streaming Celtics games in the basketball-crazed country.

Two high-profile players have also been sidelined for various reasons, including Brooklyn not allowing Kyrie Irving to be around his team until he is vaccinated against the coronavirus and Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons. Looking for a trade with 76 people who do not participate in practice or sports. yet to be built.