UPDATE: CBS has canceled Rihanna’s performance.
CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus says said: “We thought journalistically and from a tone standpoint, we needed to have the appropriate tone coverage.”
In an unfortunate coincidence, Rihanna, who was beaten by then-boyfriend Chris Brown in 2009, will perform before the NFL’s Thursday night game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens in Baltimore just days after TMZ released a surveillance video showing former Ravens running back Ray Rice knocking out his then-fiancee Janay Palmer.
Rihanna will reportedly sing “Run This Town” for the debut of Thursday Night Football on CBS days after TMZ released a surveillance video of Ray Rice sucker punching and knocking out his then-fiancee Janay Palmer.
The Ravens cut Rice and the NFL suspended him indefinitely.
As the Washington Post noted, like with Rice’s wife, the domestic abuse Rihanna suffered only became known when “TMZ published document the 2009 assault she suffered at the hands of her then-boyfriend Chris Brown the night before the Grammys.”
The NFL made the announcement about Rihanna’s performance on September 2, days before TMZ released the video but seven months after Rice was arrested for domestic violence and the first video that showed Rice dragging his unconscious fiancee out of the elevator surfaced.