ESPN host and commentator Pat McAfee issued an apology Wednesday for allowing Aaron Rodgers, the New York Jets quarterback, to make a claim about comedian Jimmy Kimmel on his program this week — comments the late-night host is threatening to sue over.
“We obviously don’t like the fact that we’re associated with anything negative ever,” McAfee said on his show. “We like our show to be an uplifting one, a happy one, a fun one; but it’s because we talk s— and try to make light of everything.”
During one of his semiregular appearances on McAfee’s show this week, Rodgers mentioned Kimmel in a conversation about disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, saying he was one of the people who is hoping a forthcoming list of Epstein’s associates “doesn’t come out.”
A federal judge in New York is expected to unseal documents from a lawsuit against Epstein, a convicted sex offender who died by suicide in prison.
Kimmel on Tuesday wrote to Rodgers in a post on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, “I’ve not met, flown with, visited, or had any contact whatsoever with Epstein, nor will you find my name on any ‘list’ other than the clearly-phony nonsense that soft-brained wackos like yourself can’t seem to distinguish from reality.”
“Your reckless words put my family in danger. Keep it up and we will debate the facts further in court,” the comedian added.
“Some things, obviously, people get very pissed off about, especially when they’re that serious allegations. So, we apologize for being a part of it,” McAfee said. “Can’t wait to hear what Aaron has to say about it. Hopefully those two will just be able to settle this. Not court-wise, but be able to chitchat and move along.”
McAfee was sued last year by NFL legend Brett Favre over comments he made about Favre’s alleged involvement in a widespread welfare fraud case in Mississippi. That lawsuit was eventually dropped after McAfee said publicly he had no knowledge of Favre’s involvement in the case.
“I can see exactly why Jimmy Kimmel felt the way he felt, especially with his position,” McAfee said on his show Wednesday. “But I think Aaron was just trying to talk shit.”
Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.