iStock/Thinkstock(DALLAS) — American Airlines has issued an apology to two players on the Memphis Hustle, the Memphis Grizzlies’ minor league affiliate, who were kicked off a plane in Dallas. The two men were wrongfully accused by a flight attendant of stealing blankets. A Hustle assistant coach suggested the two players were accused because they are black.
Memphis Hustle guard Marquis Teague and forward Trahson Burrell boarded the Sunday flight, operated by Envoy Air, from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The players were given blankets by two first class passengers as they headed to their seats in coach. It was then a flight attendant, who is also black, accused the men of theft. They were asked to leave the plane following an argument with the flight attendant.
An airline manager apologized to the players and they later flew first class to Sioux Falls, according to Airline spokesman Joshua Freed.
Hustle assistant coach Darnell Lazare said in a tweet that the flight attendant saw two “young black athletes” with blankets from first class and that his first comment was “did you steal them?”
“How about you teach people to get the facts first before jumping to conclusions,” Lazare tweeted Sunday.
Airline officials are still reviewing the matter.
Burrell played two seasons at the University of Memphis. Teague played a year at the University of Kentucky before being drafted in the first round of the 2012 NBA draft by the Chicago Bulls.
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