Nats Cut Ties With Papa John's After Founder Uses Racial Slur

The Capitals, Wizards and Mystics said they are reassessing their relationship with the company

What to Know

  • The Nationals suspended their relationship with Papa John's.
  • The Capitals, Mystics and Wizards are "assessing our relationship with the company."
  • The Orioles also cut ties.

Don't expect to get Papa John's discounts anymore when the Nats win big. 

The Washington Nationals suspended their partnership with Papa John’s after the company’s founder admitted to using a racial slur on a conference call in May, a team spokesman said.

The pizza franchise offered 50 percent discounts on online orders the day after the Nats won and scored at least seven runs. But those are no more. 

“The Washington Nationals do not condone discrimination of any kind,” the Nationals said in a statement. “Therefore, we have suspended our partnership with Papa John's. However, we remain supportive of our local operators who have been fantastic partners for more than eleven years.”

Monumental Sports, the sports and entertainment company that owns and operates the Wizards, Capitals and Washington Mystics, is “assessing our relationship with the company,” business operations president Jim Van Stone said in a statement.

The Wizards and Capitals also have run 50 percent discounts with Papa John’s. 

“These comments are reprehensible and unacceptable and in no way reflect our values as an organization,” Van Stone said. “While we are appalled by John Schnatter’s comments, we have had a long relationship with our local Washington-area franchise ownership and appreciate working with them as partners in our community.”

DC Breeze, the District’s professional ultimate frisbee team, said in a statement that the team will continue to “support these local businesses, rather than cause further damage in response to the actions and words of someone else.”

The Redskins did not immediately respond to NBC’s request for comment.

Further north, the Orioles suspended their advertising and promotions campaign with the company, the team confirmed.

After a Forbes report surfaced, Schnatter admitted to using the N-word on the conference call. The word was used during a media training exercise. 

Schnatter, the founder of Papa John’s, stepped down as the company’s CEO last year. He blamed the company’s financial struggles on the attention NFL players received for kneeling during the national anthem.

Papa John’s CEO Steve Ritchie said in a letter that Schnatter won’t appear in advertising or marketing materials.

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