Comedian Norm MacDonald passed away on Tuesday at the age of 61 after a battle with cancer.
The former “SNL” star was famous for such bits like Weekend Update and portraying Burt Reynolds on Celebrity Jeopardy.
But MacDonald is also a somewhat infamous figure within the realm of sports.
ESPN asked the comedian to host the ESPY Awards in 1998 — the sixth year the network aired the award show for professional athletes.
But ESPN did not realize just how risqué its choice of MacDonald would be.
MacDonald delivered a nine-minute opening monologue that was arguably, perhaps undoubtedly, the edgiest and most politically incorrect thing ESPN has ever aired.
Nothing was off-limits for the comedian, who cracked jokes about Anthony Mason’s rape charges, mocked Hideki Irabu and alas, ended with an unforgettable punchline about OJ Simpson that left a clearly uncomfortable Ken Griffey Jr. shaking his head in disbelief and Barry Bonds burying his head in his hands.
Warning: some jokes may be insensitive
There were actually a couple of shots of Griffey unsure of how to react to some of MacDonald’s jokes. Bill Bradley rolled his eyes after a line about Charles Barkley while several other athletes appeared to be smiling uncomfortably through it all.
Following news of his passing, some on Twitter recalled his time as ESPY host.