L.A. Sparks GM Penny Toler Fired After Using N-Word During Locker Room Tirade

The Los Angeles Sparks fired general manager Penny Toler following reports of a post-game tirade in which Toler reportedly used the n-word after a game.

It was widely reported that the now-former Sparks GM went into the locker room after the 26-point loss on Sept. 19 and used the offensive language. Toler did not dispute using the language, but claimed it wasn’t directed at any players.


“By no means did I call my players the N-word. I’m not saying that I couldn’t have used it in a context. But it wasn’t directed at any of my players.

“It’s unfortunate I used that word. I shouldn’t. Nobody should. … But you know, like I said, I’m not here to defend word by word by word what I said. I know some of the words that I’m being accused of are embellished. Did I give a speech that I hoped would get our team going? Yes.

“I think that this whole conversation has been taken out of context because when we lose, emotions are running high and, unfortunately and obviously, some people feel some type of way.”

This season marked Toler’s 20th as general manager in which the Sparks made the playoffs 18 times and won WNBA titles in 2001, 2002 and 2016.

Sparks released a statement on the situation: