For the first time since breaking football, the media, and the internet, Richard Sherman addressed the reaction to his postgame interview, and his critics' use of the word "thug."
"The only reason it bothers me is because it seems like it's the accepted way of calling somebody the N-word nowadays. Because they know."
The day after the Seahawks' win, the word "thug" was uttered 625 times on American television, or more than on any single day in at least three years.
Sherman then referenced the Flames-Canucks line brawl on Saturday:
"There was a hockey game where they didn't even play hockey, they just threw the puck aside and started fighting. I saw that, and said, 'Oh man, I'm the thug? What's going on here?'"
Sherman said the choice of epithet was particularly galling, because it's something he's had to deal with his entire life.
"I know some 'thugs,' and they know I'm the furthest thing from a thug. I've fought that my whole life, just coming from where I'm coming from. Just because you hear Compton, you hear Watts, you hear cities like that, you just think 'thug, he's a gangster, he's this, that, and the other,' and then you hear Stanford, and they're like, 'oh man, that doesn't even make sense, that's an oxymoron.'
"You fight it for so long, and to have it come back up and people start to use it again, it's frustrating."
See also: Richard Sherman And The Plight Of The Conquering Negro