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Dan Gilbert Releases Statement on Jesse Jackson's 'Runaway Slave' Comments

Jul 12, 2010 – 5:44 PM
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Pat McManamon

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Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert "strongly" disagreed with remarks made by the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sunday about LeBron James.

Jackson had said the owner's angry letter about James' departure reflected a master-slave mentality, and that Gilbert was treating James like a "runaway slave."

Gilbert's statement, released through the team, was brief and to the point:

"I strongly disagree with Rev. Jesse Jackson's recent comments and we are not going to engage in any related discussion on it. Going forward, we're very excited about the Cavaliers and the positive future of our region."

Gilbert is attending the owners' meetings in Las Vegas, where NBA commissioner David Stern said Monday he was fining the Cavaliers $100,000 for the comments.

"He was completely correct in expressing his disappointment," Stern said, adding that Gilbert's statement and the sentiments he expressed in a follow-up interview with the AP were "a little bit extreme."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
Filed under: Sports