Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant has apologized for using an anti-gay slur.

“What I said last night should not be taken literally,” Bryant said in a statement. “My actions were out of frustration during the heat of the game, period.”

He added: “The words expressed do NOT reflect my feelings towards the gay and lesbian communities and were NOT meant to offend anyone.”

During Tuesday's nationally televised game against the San Antonio Spurs, the six-foot-six Bryant stormed to the bench after he received a technical foul from referee Bennie Adams.

Once seated, an angry Bryant threw a towel and yelled “Bennie” followed by what appeared to be “fucking faggot.”

NBA Commissioner David Stern on Wednesday announced he was fining the five-time NBA champion $100,000 for the outburst.

“Kobe Bryant's comment during last night's game was offensive and inexcusable,” Stern said. “While I'm fully aware that basketball is an emotional game, such a distasteful term should never be tolerated. … Kobe and everyone associated with the NBA know that insensitive or derogatory comments are not acceptable and have no place in our game or society.”