Joakim Noah was filmed by ESPN's cameras spewing a homophobic slur in the heat of the moment during Sunday night's loss to the Miami Heat. Even though the Chicago Bulls big man apologized after the game, the NBA has still fined him $50,000 for the comments.
From the NBA's public relations department Twitter account: "Bulls' Noah fined $50,000 for using a derogatory and offensive term from the bench during the Bulls' 96-85 loss to the Heat in Game 3."
It isn't surprising that Noah was fined for the comment, but the amount of the fine is what surprised most initially as Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant was fined $100,000 in nearly the same instance earlier this season. The difference between Noah and Bryant's fine comes due to the fact that Bryant was only talking to a fan and not an official, according to CBSSports.com.
Whether or not its right that directing slurs at homophobic fans is half as bad as verbally abusing officials, as NBA commissioner David Stern seems to imply with the differing amounts, is probably an argument best left for another day.