Ari Shaffir's comedy career is circling the drain amid fierce public backlash to his comments about NBA legend Kobe Bryant.
Shaffir's talent agent dropped him, and a NY comedy club cancelled an upcoming show after the comedian made light of Kobe's death.
When the news broke that the former Lakers star died in a helicopter crash on Sunday, Shaffir joked that Kobe died "23 years too late."
Shaffir said Kobe should have died 23 years earlier, a crude reference to the NBA star's scandalous rape case in Colorado in 2003.
After the initial backlash, that included death threats, Shaffir claimed his Twitter account was hacked. When that excuse didn't work, he said he was only joking.
"Every time a beloved celerity dies I post some horrible shit about them. I've been doing it for years now,” he wrote. "I like destroying gods. And right when a famous person dies they're at their most worshipped. So as a response to all the outpouring of sympathy on social media, I post something vile. It's just a joke. I don't really hate any of the people."
He explained that he wasn't aware Kobe's daughter, Gianna, 13, was also on the helicopter when it crashed into a hillside in dense fog. Shaffir said he was just "looking to post some inappropriate jokes” to boost his follow count.
Explaining that he hated the Lakers because they would always "torch" his beloved Charlotte Hornets, Shaffir said he realized his post was inappropriate and he apologized.
"I'm not actually celebrating his death. I'm not actually celebrating any of their deaths. That's just an act."