K.C. Chiefs receiver Dwayne Bowe is in full backpedal mode after initially denying that he told an ESPN reporter about the team’s practice of “importing” groupies to the team hotel during road trips.
Eddie Kennison, Bowe’s teammate in 2007, told WHB-AM in Kansas City earlier this week that Bowe told him he never talked to anyone from ESPN about the story. Thursday, Bowe himself was asked by a K.C. reporter, “What about the actual interview? Did you actually talk to the guy?”
Bowe replied, “I really can’t remember, man. That’s why I’m still stuck in a daze.”
Bowe made that statement after claiming to the same K.C. media gathering on Thursday that he was, “misquoted.” Bowe also added to the media that day that, “The way he (ESPN reporter) took it was totally not the way that I said it.”
Later Thursday, local Kansas City magazine The Pitch reported that Bowe was actually captured on tape making his claims about importing groupies to a San Diego hotel in 2007.
ESPN The Magazine editor Gary Belsky told The Pitch this morning that he has a tape of Chiefs receiver Dwayne Bowe telling one of his writers about veteran players flying groupies in for road games. Belsky even offered to play the audio file for Bowe or anyone within the Chiefs organization with a vested interest in hearing it.
ESPN has subsequently declined to release the audio to the public, leaving some to wonder about the veracity of Belsky’s claim.
Since The Pitch’s report though, I have confirmed through a source that the tape does indeed exist and that there’s a specific reason why ESPN doesn’t want to release the contents to the media.
I was told earlier today that while telling the story, Bowe mentioned names and details that ESPN felt shouldn’t be released to the public. The move was explained to me as protecting those named in the story and Bowe himself.
Based on Bowe’s subsequent, multiple contradictory statements in the past 48 hours in denying responsibility for the story, he’s eliminated any chance of anyone believing him about anything.
For that reason, ESPN made the right call in withholding the contents of the tape to the public.