Adidas has sent out an apology statement after Friday morning’s AAU scandal with a female referee who was replaced mid-game, as tournament organizers acquiesced to LaVar Ball‘s ultimatum of having her sent off the game or having his team removed from the event.
“The referee substitutions made during our tournament last week are not in line with our company values,” Adidas spokesperson Madeline Breskin told For The Win. “It was the wrong decision. We regret the situation and are looking into the matter to make sure our standards for sportsmanship, equality and fair play are met in the future.
“Supporting all athletes is critical to who we are. We believe in the power of sport to create positivity and bring people together. Importantly, any representation that we would compromise our values and inclusive approach for the benefit of any individual is inaccurate.”
A female referee was substituted mid-game during Friday’s Adidas Uprising Summer AAU tournament game after penalizing Ball with a technical foul as he constantly berated her after every call.
Adidas had reportedly put referees in place who wouldn’t eject Ball during the game, thing which eventually happened with another referee eventually.
Ball refused to leave the court and consequently took his team, the Big Ballers, off the court, forfeiting the game. It was the second time in a week in which Mr. Ball had forfeited a game after disagreeing with the officiating.
The unnamed female referee is a Division I college official with many games under her belt.
The NBA Referees Twitter account released a statement after compiling the facts, supporting the official who declined comment on the matter.
2/ First, the misogynistic comments and intimidation by the coach have no place in basketball – or anywhere.
— NBA Referees (@OfficialNBARefs) July 30, 2017