Stephen A. Smith Apologized For Comparing Rihanna To Beyoncé: ‘Gotta Be More Careful’

Stephen A. Smith might be a loudmouth with occasionally boneheaded opinions but he’s no fool. Just hours after risking the ire of two of music’s biggest fan bases, he’s already walking back his comments negatively comparing Rihanna to Beyoncé. In a video posted on his Twitter account, Stephen A. apologized to Rihanna and admitted that “I need to be more careful” in the future.

“I’m gonna own it,” he said, before tossing a little shade at the outlets that highlighted his faux pas. “I know what y’all trying to do. But I’m gonna own it because I get paid to speak for a living so I need to be more careful.” He then turned his attention to clearing the air with Rihanna, saying, “I want Rihanna to know: You’re a superstar. You’re sensational. You’re spectacular. You’re no joke, and you’re a worthy person to be doing the Super Bowl Halftime Show.”

He also elaborated on what he meant by “she ain’t Beyoncé.” “I’m a Beyoncé fan,” he explained. “I think Beyoncé is not only a phenomenal performer; she’s thee phenomenal performer. The only reason any kind of comparison came into play is because Beyoncé performed at the Super Bowl… and I thought those were two of the greatest shows I’ve ever seen. Anybody has to measure up to that.”

He also pointed out that he compared last year’s Dr. Dre performance with Snoop Dogg, Eminem, and Mary J. Blige to Beyoncé’s before going full Stephen A. and asserting that even a Michael Jackson reprise would have to measure up to her and… well. It’s Stephen A. Smith. You couldn’t have been expecting a totally contrite response.

Smith made sure to show love to both Bey and Rih before saying he wished no disrespect to either, encouraging Rihanna to “do your thing.”