Sam Newman's explosive rant against George Floyd and LeBron James

Sam Goodwin
·Sports Editor
Sam Newman and George Floyd, pictured here in Australia and America.
Sam Newman has taken aim at George Floyd's character and said he shouldn't be idolised. Image: Getty/Twitter

Sam Newman has once again slammed AFL players for taking a knee before games last weekend, saying George Floyd should not be idolised.

AFL players and officials knelt before games in round two to send a message amidst the Black Lives Matter movement sweeping the world.

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Newman previously hit out at the statement and said the players had been ‘intimidated’ into kneeling - and he’s now doubled down on his criticism by claiming the reason for the protests has been lost.

“No one knows why they’re kneeling at this stage, which was inspired by an American event,” Newman said on his podcast 'You Cannot Be Serious' on Thursday.

Fremantle and Brisbane players, pictured here taking a knee before their AFL game.
Fremantle and Brisbane players take a knee before their AFL game. (Photo by Jono Searle/AFL Photos/Getty Images)

“The players wouldn’t have knelt if George Floyd hadn’t been suffocated by a disgraceful act by the American police.

“The protest was about police brutality, then it morphed into all those other things then they came out and said it’s about racism here and Aboriginals.

“People wonder why we take this from overseas. That wasn’t the reason they knelt in the first place, it was police brutality.

“That’s why they got on a knee, they were protesting against police brutality and then it morphed into Black Lives Matter and then it morphed into defund the police then it got to racism then it got to looting and … the whole cause has been overlooked.

“When you see people kneeling in our game, for god’s sake make it apparent what they’re kneeling (for).”

Newman also questioned Floyd’s character and asked how anyone could devote ‘monuments’ to him.

“George Floyd, who is a piece of sh*t incidentally,” Newman said in reference to the 46-year-old’s criminal history.

“You know who George Floyd is? He has been in jail five times, he held up a pregnant black woman with a knife, he's a drug addict, he's a crack head and he's a porn star.”

To which co-host Mike Sheahan responded: “And he's dead”.

“Because of the police brutality,” Newman responded.

“And it should never have happened, but I'm just telling you who George Floyd is and they've made a monument to him and he's a piece of sh*t.”

Newman went on to say the police actions in Floyd’s death were “disgraceful” and “inexcusable”, but couldn’t see why the protests had spread to Australia.

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Sam Newman takes aim at LeBron James

The former AFL Footy Show favourite also expressed his dismay with recent comments from NBA superstar LeBron James about the death of Ahmaud Arbery, a black man shot while out jogging.

“We’re literally hunted EVERYDAY/EVERYTIME we step foot outside the comfort of our homes! Can’t even go for a damn jog man! Like WTF man are you kidding me,” LeBron tweeted.

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Newman said LeBron’s claims were just dividing people.

“This is LeBron James’ statement, this is what you’re dealing with, this is how you divide people,” Newman said.

“Now what sort of irresponsible nonsense is that and how does that unite people? That does more to drive a wedge between people, that divides people.

“That’s meant to be a responsible person who is meant to be partially educated. Why do people put up with nonsense like that?”

LeBron James, pictured here in action for the Los Angeles Lakers in 2019.
LeBron James in action for the Los Angeles Lakers in 2019. (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)

Newman continues war with Caroline Wilson

Not done there, Newman also hit back in his war-of-words with veteran journalist Caroline Wilson, calling her “hypocritical” and an “irrelevant, insignificant bag of wind”.

Wilson previously slammed Newman for his statements on AFL players kneeling.

“He said most players didn't understand why they were kneeling and had been intimidated into it,” Wilson said on Footy Classified on Monday.

“For what it's worth, I didn't think it was political, I thought it was social and a united move and it was one that united all the players, black and white, and represented a brotherhood that Newman did not understand and therefore tried to belittle.

“Sam, you've got a terrible history in the area of race relations, and you've done it again, unleashing a series of bitter and divisive rants.”

"Sam you've got a terrible history in the area of race relations, and you've done it again.”