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Kobe Bryant may want to think before he speaks.

After referee Beanie Adams penalized him for a technical foul during Tuesday's game, the L.A. Lakers player was caught on camera calling the referee a "f**king f*ggot" -- and the NBA is none too pleased.

Though Bryant, 32, issued an apology on Wednesday -- "My actions were out of frustration during the heat of the game," he explained -- the NBA decided to fine Bryant $100,000 for uttering the homophobic slur on live television.

"Kobe Bryant's comment during last night's game was offensive and inexcusable," NBA commissioner David Stern explained. "While I'm fully aware that basketball is an emotional game, such a distasteful term should never be tolerated."

Bryant -- who made an estimated $48 million last year -- later told ESPN 710's Mason & Ireland radio show that he plans to appeal the fine, calling the move "standard protocol."

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"The comment that I made, even though it wasn't meant in the way it was perceived to be, is nonetheless wrong, so it's important to own that," Bryant said on Wednesday.

"It's important for me to talk about that issue because it's OK to be who you are," the athlete continued, "and I don't want this issue to be a part of something or to magnify something that shouldn't be."