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Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver created a toxic and sometimes hostile workplace, using insensitive racial language and making lewd and misogynistic comments, according to a published report.

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“The level of misogyny and racism is beyond the pale,” one of the team’s co-owners told ESPN in a report published Thursday. “It’s embarrassing as an owner.”

The NBA announced Thursday that it will launch an investigation of Sarver, The Washington Post reported.

ESPN interviewed more than 70 former and current Suns employees about Sarver, 60, who owns the NBA’s Suns and the WNBA’s Mercury, according to an article published by staff writer Baxter Holmes.

Among the allegations was a 2016 incident in which Sarver allegedly questioned why Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green was allowed to use the N-word during a game after the Suns lost to Golden State, ESPN reported.

After the game, which Phoenix lost 106-100 to Golden State, Sarver allegedly entered the coaches’ locker room and confronted coach Earl Watson.

“You know, why does Draymond Green get to run up the court and say (the N-word),” Sarver, who is white, allegedly said, repeating the slur several times.

“You can’t say that,” Watson, who is Black and Hispanic, told Sarver, according to the ESPN report.

“Why?” Sarver replied. “Draymond Green says (it).”

“You can’t (expletive) say that,” Watson said again.

Sarver denied Watson’s account, CNN reported.

“This is absolutely untrue. I remember the game and topic clearly. I of course never used the word myself. During this conversation, I said N-word without saying the full word,” Sarver said, according to ESPN. “The word itself never crossed my lips.”

Watson, now an assistant with the Toronto Raptors, issued a statement that he was “not interested in engaging in an ongoing battle of fact.”

A former Suns executive, speaking about Sarver’s 17-year tenure as the Suns’ owner, told ESPN that, “There’s literally nothing you could tell me about him from a misogynistic or race standpoint that would surprise me.”

Sarver, speaking through his legal team, denied using racially offensive language, ESPN reported.

“I’ve never called anyone or any group of people the N-word, or referred to anyone or any group of people by the N-word, either verbally or in writing,” Sarver told the sports network. “I don’t use that word. It is abhorrent and ugly and denigrating and against everything I believe in.”

According to the report, Sarver allegedly passed around a photograph of his wife in a bikini to employees and talked about sexual acts she had performed. Sarver also allegedly asked a woman if he “owned” her to determine if she worked for the Suns, ESPN reported.

Other incidents detailed by ESPN include:

  • Sarver using a racial slur when trying to explain to a staffer why he preferred hiring Lindsey Hunter, who is Black, over Dan Majerle as head coach in 2013.
  • Sarver creating a culture in which a number of employees, especially women, described incidents of being subjected to, or witnessing, verbal barrages from male executives.
  • Pantsing a former Suns account executive in front of more than 60 employees at the team’s ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

Suns Vice Chairman Jahm Najafi issued a statement Thursday, calling the conduct alleged in the report “unacceptable,’’ The Arizona Republic reported.

“I have been made aware of the allegations against Robert Sarver, the managing partner who runs the Phoenix Suns. The conduct (Sarver) is alleged to have committed has stunned and saddened me and is unacceptable,” Najafi said. “The well-being and safety of every Suns employee, player, coach and stakeholder is first and foremost our priority. My sincerest sympathy goes out to all whose lives and professions have been impacted.”

Jason Rowley, president and CEO of the Suns, called the story “completely outrageous and false.”

“It doesn’t represent — at all — the Robert Sarver I’ve worked alongside of for 15 years,” Rowley told ESPN. “He’s not a racist and he’s not a sexist.”

NBA spokesperson Mike Bass said the league has not “received a complaint of misconduct” by the Suns organization.

“The allegations contained in today’s ESPN article are extremely serious, and we have directed the Wachtell Lipton law firm to commence a comprehensive investigation,” Bass said in a statement. “The NBA and WNBA remain committed to providing a respectful and inclusive workplace for all employees. Once the investigation is completed, its findings will provide the basis for any league action.”

Sarver bought the Suns in 2004 for around $400 million, Sports Illustrated reported. Forbes magazine has valued the Suns at $1.8 billion, according to Sports Illustrated.

Read the entire ESPN report here.