It’s been an absolutely crazy week and a half in sports with superstars joining new teams via trades (Chris Paul) or mega-signings (Albert Pujols). But not to be overshadowed are the injustices that also seems to be breaking every other day. Let’s examine the darker side of sports.
Last week, Dan Gilbert made himself an owner to be dubiously
remembered–had anyone possibly forgotten about the LeBron James fiasco–by single-handedly getting the attention of Commissioner David Stern with this email I’ll re-post in its entirety.
It would be a travesty to allow the Lakers to acquire Chris Paul in the apparent trade being discussed.
This trade should go to a vote of the 29 owners of the Hornets.
Over the next three seasons this deal would save the Lakers approximately $20 million in salaries and approximately $21 million in luxury taxes. That $21 million goes to non-taxpaying teams and to fund revenue sharing.
I cannot remember ever seeing a trade where a team got by far the best player in the trade and saved over $40 million in the process. And it doesn’t appear that they would give up any draft picks, which might allow to later make a trade for Dwight Howard. (They would also get a large trade exception that would help them improve their team and/or eventually trade for Howard.) When the Lakers got Pau Gasol (at the time considered an extremely lopsided trade) they took on tens of millions in additional salary and luxury tax and they gave up a number of prospects (one in Marc Gasol who may become a max-salary player).
I just don’t see how we can allow this trade to happen.
I know the vast majority of owners feel the same way that I do.
When will we just change the name of 25 of the 30 teams to the Washington Generals?
I didn’t know you could shoot down a trade for fear of a team’s next move or that a player who averaged 12 and 7 last season is a max-salary player. (Marc Gasol quietly signed with Memphis Wednesday for four years and $57.7 million.) It’s nice to see the inner workings of NBA owners colluding to bring down better teams.
Stern vetoed the trade citing “basketball reasons,” which sure as hell
had nothing to do with ensuring the league-owned Hornets get as much as they can for their superstar.
What they got from the Clippers
What they would’ve gotten from the Lakers and Rockets
I could make a case and simply say would you rather have Odom and Dragic or move up in the first round of next year’s draft? I’d argue you if you said the trade to the Clippers clearly got them better value nor did they have the foresight to see that marginal difference when they vetoed the first trade. Rather, Stern, Gilbert and co. saw the Lakers an already great team and the Clippers a non-threat.
Part of the reason the trade was admittedly vetoed was because they tried to prevent superstars from going to only big-market teams like L.A. That’s blatantly hypocritical to overlook the Clippers, who share the same stadium as the Lakers, as a big-market team.
Sunday, Lamar Odomwas traded to the defending champions for a
bag of peanuts. When responding to the trade, Kobe Bryant said they gave away the versatile forward “seemingly for nothing.” Now, you know how the Pau Gasol trade felt to everyone else. Lakers 1, Washington Generals 1.
Lakers fans have got the Odom giveaway all wrong. Or maybe, they’re just turning a blind eye as they do whenever anything doesn’t go their way. Odom cried his way out of the team. I can’t remember the last time someone got so publicly butthurt over a trade, failed or not, but the man missed both practices and had no intention of returning to the court in purple and gold. He got his wish, and there will be no sad eulogy for his departure.
Saturday, NL MVP Ryan Braun tested positive for PEDs and if it holds, will be suspended for the first 50 games of the 2012 season. The injustice? No baseball award has ever been revoked, and there’s absolutely no talk of Braun losing his. But that’s the second injustice. How Braun ever won the award to begin with, or it even being a two-man race, is beyond belief.
Matt Kemp owned Braun across the board and was one homerun shy of 40/40, a feat that I believe would’ve made the voting a little easier for the Jayson Starks‘ out there. The only reason I could think of for voters choosing Braun over Kemp is because the Brewers made the playoffs, a criterion I hate in MLB MVP voting. Braun had Prince Fielder, who had as good a season as him; the Dodgers didn’t have a single other player even have a decent offensive season, which ensures better opportunity for Braun. As if the PEDs didn’t do that.
I disagree with everything Starks says in his article, defending Braun in that he should keep his undeserving award. From reasons ranging from ‘because it’s never been done in history before and if we do it to this, when will it stop” (like a total idiot) to ‘his stats weren’t any better this year than in his career’ (which is even worse; question his entire career), it should be a no-brainer that Braun should have to give up his award to the second-place Kemp. You know, the best guy who did not cheat this season.