Robert Sarver showed Suns employees photo of bikini-clad wife

1 year ago 125

Robert Sarver is astatine the center of allegations of racism and misogyny, and enabling a toxic enactment civilization during his 17-year tenure arsenic proprietor of the Phoenix Suns.

In a shocking report by ESPN, which includes much than 70 interviews from existent and erstwhile Suns employees, Sarver is accused of passing astir a photograph of his wife, Penny Sanders, successful a Suns bikini portion astatine a meeting.

Sarver, who took implicit the squad successful 2004, reportedly exposed the photograph to staffers aboriginal connected successful his tenure arsenic owner.

“We’re passing it astir similar a blistery potato,” 1 erstwhile enforcement who was contiguous during the gathering told ESPN. “Like, what successful the hellhole are we expected to bash with this? That was just, you know, 1 aboriginal glimpse astatine the man.”

Sarver, done his ineligible team, responded: “This is simply a cleanable illustration of however things get twisted,” helium said. “In the archetypal twelvemonth of my ownership, a section apparel retailer had precocious been awarded the licence to merchantability authoritative NBA branded swimwear. The retailer sent my woman and maine a illustration on with a brochure, and I took a representation of her successful the sample.

“I took the brochure and representation of her and gave it to the radical astatine the Suns successful complaint of overseeing merchandise with the message: ‘Here’s the catalog, this is what the swimsuit looks like, and if you person immoderate involvement successful carrying this enactment successful the squad shop, past here’s the fig to call.'”

Suns proprietor  Robert Sarver and his woman  Penny Sanders earlier  Game 1 of the 2021 NBA Finals against the Bucks.Suns proprietor Robert Sarver and his woman Penny Sanders earlier Game 1 of the 2021 NBA Finals against the Bucks. Getty Images

According to much than a twelve Suns employees, Sarver made vulgar comments successful all-staff meetings and discussed intersexual details astir oral enactment with his wife.

Four erstwhile employees recalled respective all-staff meetings, successful which Sarver said helium wore Magnum oregon extra-large condoms. Former employees besides said Sarver asked players astir their enactment lives and the intersexual prowess of their important others.

Sarver denied talking astir his enactment beingness with employees and said helium had “absolutely not” talked astir condoms.

In the summertime of 2015, the Suns reportedly targeted LaMarcus Aldridge successful escaped agency, knowing that helium wanted to play adjacent his young children successful Texas. Sarver allegedly past told 2 erstwhile hoops operations staffers that the Suns needed to person section strippers get large with NBA players’ children truthful that players would consciousness obligated to instrumentality around. Sarver allegedly saw it arsenic a imaginable vantage successful escaped bureau and recruitment.

“A batch of the worldly helium says is to get a large reaction,” a erstwhile worker said. “And who’s going to archer him that helium can’t? He speaks successful threats. He likes that awkwardness. He likes radical to cognize that he’s successful charge. He wants control. He wants power of each concern and each person.”

During a abstracted occasion, Sarver allegedly asked a pistillate whether helium “owned” her to find whether she worked for the Suns.

“Women person precise small value,” 1 pistillate erstwhile staffer said. “Women are possessions. And I deliberation we’re obscurity adjacent to wherever helium thinks men are.”

Robert Sarver stands with the Western Conference Championship trophyRobert Sarver stands with the Western Conference Championship trophyGetty Images

Suns wide manager James Jones told ESPN: “None of what’s been said describes the Robert Sarver I know, respect and similar — it conscionable doesn’t.”

Jason Rowley, president and CEO of the Suns, claimed the allegations against Sarver are untrue.

“This communicative is wholly outrageous and false. It doesn’t correspond — astatine each — the Robert Sarver I’ve worked alongside of for 15 years,” Rowley said. “He’s not a racist and he’s not a sexist.”

NBA spokesperson Mike Bass said the league has not “received a ailment of misconduct astatine the Suns enactment done immoderate of our processes, including our confidential workplace misconduct hotline oregon different correspondence.”

NBPA enforcement manager Michele Roberts said she was not alert of immoderate reports from players of misconduct by Sarver oregon the Suns.