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WWE

Apologizes for

Kobe Bryant Rape Joke

7/31/2012 5:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Exclusive Details

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The WWE has issued an full apology after an on-air personality joked that one of the wrestlers was "like Kobe Bryant at a hotel in Colorado ... he's unstoppable."

It all went down during a live broadcast of "Monday Night Raw" ... when a manager named Abraham Washington -- who was wearing a live mic -- was ringside for a match involving a wrestler named Titus O'Neil ... and during the action, A.W. let the Kobe crack fly.

The comment is an obvious reference to Kobe's 2003 sexual assault case -- when he was accused of raping a woman in his hotel room in Eagle, Colorado. The accuser eventually reached a settlement with Kobe and dropped her case.

A rep for the WWE has issued a statement to TMZ ... telling us, "A.W. made an inappropriate comment and WWE immediately apologized."

The rep adds, "WWE has taken appropriate action in the matter." It's unclear what kind of "action" the org. has decided to take.

Sources tell us A.W. "felt horrible" after he made the comment ... claiming he simply "got caught up in the moment" ... and realizes the comment could be hurtful to rape victims and their families.

A.W. immediately apologized to WWE honchos, including the McMahon family, and several wrestlers ... and has also vowed to refrain from making similar comments in the future.

update_bar
10:20 PM PT -- Washington has issued an apology on Twitter ... calling his comments "inappropriate and insensitive."

He adds, "I went too far with that joke."

For more sports stories, check out tmzsports.com!
73 COMMENTS

No Avatar
16.

Kris    

BS. Don't think for one second that his comment wasn't worked up by a WWE writer. Him having to "apologize" to the WWE & McMahon is just their way of deflecting the blame onto the lowly talent. He's a scapegoat, and most likely had to take ownership of it to keep himself on the payroll.

726 days ago
17.

I am Spartacus    

The joke really wasn't THAT bad... especially to some of the other stuff they've done in the past. All he said was "Titus O'Neil is like Kobe Bryant in that hotel room in Colorado, he's unstoppable."


So compared to a lot of stuff they've done in the past it wasn't THAT bad.

726 days ago
18.

Fat Mike    

Go Lakers!

726 days ago
19.

TMP    

I am pretty free with humor... I think that everyone is pretty much free game when it comes to joking and all, but there are a few things that just aren't funny. Rape is one of them. Sorry... just my opinion.

725 days ago
20.

Raphael    

AW's been overdoing it. This still doesn't compare to when he made a Taco Bell joke aimed at opposing Mexican wrestlers

725 days ago
21.

Marcos     

Big show's joke was a lot better years ago.

"In my world, you're the white girl and I'm Kobe Bryant"

lol

725 days ago
22.

StupidYank    

Hurtful to the rape victm? You mean the gold digger that lied to get paid? What a joke!

725 days ago
23.

verlinda    

I thought their comments were scripted. Besides no one ever calls out late night Comedians for poor taste in jokes.

725 days ago
24.

God-Of-Lyf    

So it was distasteful, it's wrestling for crying out loud. The joke was funny as hell, many of US laughed when he said it, so what! Move on... Meanwhile I have a female captive in my basement I have to beat, I mean feed see you later...!!!!

725 days ago
25.

harv    

I watched wwe last night and didnt even hear the joke, guess that tells you how much attention i was playing.

725 days ago
26.

static    

It's not so much a joke as it is a reminder that he is a rapist (allegedly) in a lot of people's mind.

725 days ago
27.

KDOGG    

This coming from a company that did a storyline with a wrestler having sex with a dead body (Look up "Katie Vick storyline"). A.W. made a stupid statement but he's a heel. Thats his job. Fine him and lets move on.

725 days ago
28.

Fat Mike    

Why did you remove my "Fat Mike at an all you can eat buffet" joke?
Oooh, someone's a little sensitive.

725 days ago
29.

oink    

Kobe doesn't know what the word rape means.

725 days ago
30.

DrDeMarzo    

Are you guys hiring proofreaders by any chance? I'll work cheaply. OK, first of all, he didn't say "..hotel room", he said, "hotel". Insignificant, but getting quotes correctly is the first thing they teach in journalism school. And he didn't issue 'AN' full apology, he issued 'A' full apology. Why is there an 'AN' before the word 'full'? It's really getting bad you guys, please have someone proofread your copy before you post it for the world to see. It just reeks of amateur.

725 days ago
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