Pimp Slap!

melo.jpg 

I’ve been thinking about violence in sports and in our culture in general since Saturday nights basketbrawl between the Knicks and Nuggets. Carmelo Anthony will sit for 15 games (losing $640,000 in salary) along with six other players. Each team was hit with a $500,000 fine as well.

Those who aren’t fans of the NBA or are fringe fans are already crying “they’re just a bunch of thugs. Money can’t change that.” I’m not personally a huge basketball fan, but I totally disagree with those who are calling this a travesty. Heck, I wasn’t even that offended by what happened in 2004 between Detroit and the Pacers. Why? We’ve seen it before. That doesn’t make it right, but it also means it doesn’t signal the decline of our civilization.

 I am a hockey fan. We see it everynight. Yes, it’s part of the game. You can argue that it doesn’t serve a real purpose anymore and that’s partially true, but it’s part of the games heritage on the professional level. Deal with it. There are plenty of times in hockey history when players have gone into the stands, like the time in 1979 in the very same building where Carmelo threw his “pimpslap.” The Boston Bruins had just defeated the Rangers in Madison Square Garden and tensions were high. Bruin Stan Jonathan was hit by an object from the stands. Wrong guy to hit. Another idiot fan decided to challenge Terry O’Reilly; again, bad choice. Several Bruins went into the stands. Mike Milbury eventually beat a Ranger fan with his own shoe. Hilarious! In the end O’Reilly received an 8 game suspension and Milbury was suspended for 2 games. Anyone remember how many games Ron Artest got for his part in the riot of 2004? 73 games! How many games did Tennessee Titan Albert Haynesworth get for stomping on the head of fallen Dallas Cowboy Andre Gurode? He got the leagues longest ever suspension; 5 games!

So, how is this different? Is it because NBA players are predominately black (yes, I know Albert Haynesworth is also black)? I hate to go there, but I’m at a loss for why NBA suspensions are always so excessive vs. NHL, MLB, and even NFL suspensions. Is it a shorter leash?

Let’s keep things civilized folks. Anyone gettings the Liddell vs. Ortiz fight this month?

 ps. For the record Haynesworth suspension was for 31% of the season while Melo’s, if it stands, will be for 18%. Artest = repeat offender (just like Marty McSorely).

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5 responses to “Pimp Slap!

  1. Violence in sports has been around for a long time but it saddens me when I see it in other sports (I too accept as part of hockey…when, in an instant, any arena is turned into a scene from Gladiator). I don’t see an answer though…tougher suspensions? Zero tollerance? Who knows…truth be told I have no clue what the answer is or should be.

    (You failed to mention Todd Bertuzi’s attack of Steve Moore which ended up getting Bertuzi only a mild suspension due to the lock out. While Moore has yet to fully recover from it. Bertuzzi nearly killed Moore in act of pure hatred and he is still skating and making millions today.)

  2. Good point. I also failed to mention Marty McSorley’s 1 year suspension for his attach on Donald Brashear. Marty was a repeat offender though.

  3. these guys are thugs. i quit watching basketball about the time magic, bird, and jordan stopped playing. i don’t even know who the guys involved in this brawl are; nor do i care. i do think penalties are tougher b/c b-ball is not supposed to be a contact sport, so it seems more flagrant when players start smacking each other around in a sport that doesn’t include contact anyway.

  4. I never agree with Moe on much, but I do agree with him about the fact basketball is not a contact sport. Also, you have to remember in basketball they play 82 games, a 15 game suspension is equal to around a 2 game suspension in Football. I tried to like Melo, but when you sucker punch the smallest guy on the court and back away….you look like a weak punk.

  5. I wonder how much money Jordan has made from his shoe line? Probably in the billions!

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