Stampeders Nik Lewis to donate West final cheque to women’s shelter

CALGARY – The consequences of a questionable tweet continue for Calgary Stampeders running back Nik Lewis.

Lewis was more apologetic in a statement issued Thursday by the team than he had been when addressing the media the previous day.

On Monday, Lewis had tweeted: “I just bought OJ’s gloves on eBay. Now all I need is a white girl named Nicole.” He added the hashtag #MaybeALittleToFar.

The reference was to the 1995 murder trial of former NFL player O.J. Simpson, who was asked in the courtroom to put on leather gloves found at the crime scene.

Simpson was acquitted in the murder of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman, but he lost a civil court case against him for their wrongful deaths.

Lewis was somewhat repentant when asked about the tweet by reporters on Wednesday, but seemed to take the matter more seriously a day later.

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“It’s not in my character or nature to condone violence in any way, especially violence against women,” Lewis said in the statement.

“I made a huge mistake with my tweet and I apologize sincerely to everyone. I am truly sorry.

“I didn’t realize until today how many people were offended by my comment. I didn’t mean to cause anyone grief.”

Lewis, 30, will donate his paycheque from Sunday’s CFL West final to the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter and the team says it will match the contribution to the organization.

Lewis is in his ninth season with the Stampeders. He has a reputation for stirring the pot with his off-field comments.

The CFL fined Lewis an undisclosed amount Wednesday for violating the league’s social media policy.

When Lewis spoke to reporters at McMahon Stadium that day, his mea culpa was a mix of repentance and defiance.

“People follow me on Twitter for a reason,” he said Wednesday. “A lot of people have sent me letters and things like that on Twitter expressing how funny they think I am and not to change and all this other stuff.

“For the people I didn’t offend, thanks for the support. For the people I do offend, I can’t apologize every day of my life because I’m going to do something every day to offend somebody and that’s just the way it is.”

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Those comments obviously didn’t sit well with the Stampeders.

“The ownership group expresses its dismay and regret at the action of the player,” Thursday’s release said. “This player and all members of the team are expected to conduct themselves publicly and privately with professionalism and respect for the community and everyone in it.”

Stampeder coach and general manager John Hufnagel has asked his players not to tweet until the end of the CFL season.