ESPN suspends PTI’s Kornheiser
ESPN has suspended host Tony Kornheiser from his television talk show "Pardon the Interruption" for two weeks for comments he made on the radio last week about SportsCenter anchor Hannah Storm’s clothing.
"Hannah Storm in a horrifying, horrifying outfit today," Kornheiser said. "She’s got on red go-go boots and a catholic school plaid skirt … way too short for somebody in her 40s or maybe early 50s by now.
"She’s got on her typically very, very tight shirt. She looks like she has sausage casing wrapping around her upper body … I know she’s very good, and I’m not supposed to be critical of ESPN people, so I won’t … but Hannah Storm … come on now! Stop! What are you doing?"
Kornheiser opened his radio show the next day by apologizing, saying, "I apologize, unequivocally … I’m a sarcastic, subversive guy … I’m a troll, look at me. I have no right to insult what anybody looks like or what anybody wears. That, I think, should go without saying."
Kornheiser announced the suspension on his Washington D.C. radio show Tuesday morning, calling his remarks about Storm intemperate and stupid.
"As the result of this, I have been sent to the sidelines of PTI for a while," Kornheiser said.
In a written release Tuesday, ESPN called Kornheiser’s comments inappropriate.
"Hurtful and personal comments such as these are not acceptable and have significant consequences," said John Skipper, ESPN’s vice president for content. "Tony has been suspended from PTI for two weeks. Hannah is a respected colleague who has been an integral part of the success of our morning SportsCenter."
Kornheiser said he had called Storm to personally apologize for the remarks.
"If you put a live microphone in front of somebody, eventually that person will say something wrong," Kornheiser said on his show Tuesday. "This was one of the times I said something wrong."
A message seeking comment was left for Storm at ESPN.
ESPN has been troubled by a series of workplace issues involving alleged misconduct by its television personalities, though they have involved behavior off the air.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.