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ESPN made a statement Tuesday about airing a fantasy football auction that offended some because it was similar to a slave auction. Teams in the league are formed by a draft system and/or via auction where participants are given a “salary cap” which includes theoretical money bidding.

Shaun King made a tweet demanding an apology. King is a Black Lives Matter movement leader. The tweet read, “Dear @ESPN, Apologize now for doing a sketch where you auctioned a Black man off to the highest bidder”.

ESPN responded in a statement to The Big Lead saying, “Auction drafts are a common part of fantasy football, and ESPN’s segments replicated an auction draft with a diverse slate of top professional football players. Without that context, we understand the optics could be portrayed as offensive and we apologize”.

 

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