Posts Tagged ‘B. Austin’

Riley Rebel: Champion Athlete for America, Misunderstood Victim of Racist Roots, and Supremacist Upbringing

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

by B. Austin

BA

 

 

 

RC

It’s time to let “Riley Rebel”, champion of the Confederate Calvary of America, live in peace.  Time to stop judging him for shit we allow others to get away with, because it is less brash…not as overt.  I am absolutely certain his feelings are shared by many, many, many young white males from his background.  Personally, I prefer my racists and supremacists out in the open where I can see them and know their position.  I am not going to church, living near, or associating with Riley Rebel in anyway…so like white people have said for 100’s of years: “Run cracker run! Go run, jump, catch, hit, tackle, and entertain me with a football as you break your body apart for my entertainment”.

What BOTHERS ME THEN YOU ASK?  Well, I am glad you asked. What bothers me is the 7 or 8 other NBA owners that were Donald Sterling’s pals, which we will probably never know about.  What bothers me is the fact that the NFL, whose players are 72% black, have only 3 or 4 black head coaches, a few coordinators, the weakest player’s union, and NO BLACK MAJORITY OWNERS.  No, Riley Rebel doesn’t bother me much.  What bothered me was when 4 St. Louis Rams players decided to take a stand for justice regarding Michael Brown’s death in Ferguson, Police organizations and Policemen took a stand against that, and football fans didn’t rally or stand up against tyranny.  Nah, Riley Cooper didn’t bother me at all…he is entertaining.  I was much more concerned with the sports and athletic community’s lack of presence and silence in the #JusticeOrElse events.  Riley Cooper had no input there.  There are so many truly devious and heinous instances of white supremacy, racism, ethnocentrism, white privilege, white entitlement, Black apathy, Black colorism, self-hate, and overall societal erosion to point at, AND use sports as your landscape with which to do so.  Riley Cooper isn’t worth all the anger and ire he receives.  What Riley is to us and himself is a relatively slow, not-so-talented, overlooked, overpaid white professional athlete, who lives as a minority at his workplace and his true feelings came out on camera.  He probably faces an inferiority complex every day, and in the comfort and confines of his own territory, a Kenny Chesney concert filled with white country music fans (but secured by hulking Black security guards), Riley let that inferiority complex and alcohol get the best of him.  Here were guys that were bigger and stronger than him but making far less money and having far less status…and he was in front of his entourage…he had to let testosterone and frustration blend with the alcohol and racism, to go ahead and let his honest feelings be felt.  I actually feel sorry for dude. He has to live with this and public scorn for the remainder of his career, meanwhile America remains the same and the real problems go unsolved. He is merely an honest product of his environment.

 

B. Austin of War Room Sports

The Sterling Affair

Monday, April 28th, 2014

by B. Austin

Brad Blog

 

 

 

 

 

(Photo via BuschLeagueSports.com)

(Photo via BuschLeagueSports.com)

If people caught the conversations inside “the locker room of War Room Sports”, we would be banned, jailed, lynched, hung at the stake, and neutered.  My point being, as human beings we all can be insensitive in our conversations about other human beings.  Our prejudices can and do at times rear their ugly heads.  However, a consistent pattern of behavior towards others with certain malicious undertones indicates something more than prejudice or general ignorance.  Donald Sterling is the personification of something a little more heinous, and a line of thinking that has gone unchecked for far too long.

Through my travels on the world wide Web and interactions with the “internets”, there are a couple points I am putting out there in conversations regarding “The Donald Sterling Affair”: 1) We as black people ARE irate, as we should be, but we should remember it is not illegal to be racist.  It is not illegal to express racist beliefs.  Power behind any belief in this country comes from economic viability, exposure to to a mass audience, and support from that audience.  We have all supported Donald Sterling.  How you might ask?  By and large, passive inaction.  He has a history of this behavior that has gone unchecked and ignored.  He was already awarded an NAACP image award and was going to win a lifetime achievement award next month.  Due diligence was not done by us, or even more frightening,  was ignored as insignificant.  2) This point I will state facts and ask a question.  Donald Sterling purchased the Clippers for roughly $15 million.  They are presently worth $770MM.  When an owner or ownership team is selected and awarded a team by the league and the committee of other owners, VAST amounts of due diligence is done because that owner now represents the other owners and a larger global brand, with an audience of billions.  Even 30 years ago, due diligence was fairly stringent with David Stern.  Do you think the owners and NBA administration were not aware?  What is their culpability in this?  3) America turns a blind and cowardly eye to her current pathologies born from her past transgressions and trauma.  This perpetuates cowardice and weak character because we don’t inject responsibility, accountability,  and acknowledgement into our discussions about race, where we are, where we’ve been, and what is going on now.  4) Black people (and others); stop chastising and criticizing these players for not risking their financial livelihood by boycotting.  The vacuum in Black leadership can be blamed for their lack of “lay it on the line, John Carlos-like” actions.  They took adequate steps and may continue to protest.  At the end of the day, on any pro sports team, you play for the money, the love of the game, your teammates, your coach, and the fans…not ownership.  To expect them to risk $62 million (or any percentage of that salary number) is unfair.  If they did boycott, it would have been noble, honorable, and a beautiful thing, but not necessarily smart, as it would give Sterling an “out” of “non-performance” in any later legal proceedings or arbitration in an attempt to relieve him of ownership.  5) America; stop being so shocked and surprised at these racist feelings and circumstances rearing their ugly heads. We have not come that far and quite honestly we may have regressed due to societal and cultural declines in recent years.  Not to mention these are older white men who control and operate the socio-economic engines.  They grew up in the 40s, 50s, 60s.  They are direct descendants and/or participants in Jim Crow’s sons’ and grandsons’ views.  6) What is a 20-something woman of Black and Mexican decent doing dating Donald Sterling?  Does this remind you of the slave master’s relationship with Black female slaves?  He can hate pieces of you but exploit the things he wants?  7) Ultimately the true response and changing of the societal tides lie with the people, the fans. The players, the owners, etc are major stakeholders but nowhere near as powerful as the fan.  In today’s society where the culture of immediacy and sensationalism is prevalent,  how long will this remain an issue that the people are committed to?  WHAT WILL YOU DO?  NOT ANYONE ELSE.  Fight their power, become better people, and this goes away in generations and centuries.

Click here to watch the War Room Sports roundtable discussion on “The Sterling Affair”.

 

B. Austin of The War Room, for War Room Sports

Did Being Asian Work Against Jeremy Lin Pre-NBA?

Monday, April 8th, 2013

by B. Austin

 

 

 

 

 

Houston Rockets PG Jeremy Lin said that if he wasn’t Asian he would have been offered a Division 1 basketball scholarship.


There is absolute validity to what Jeremy Lin is saying.  Lin is addressing the social lens and perspective with which people generally view him and people of his ethnicity through.  That isn’t preposterous, groundbreaking, or shocking.  This is just the reality of the American social landscape and the larger narrative of human nature and racial prejudices.  There are two things that I think would serve us well to acknowledge and address:
 
1) Professional sports is one of the only places where racism, prejudices, and social rifts can be mended because of the closeness of a team and a locker room.
 
2) Also the fact that competitive professional sports is the ultimate meritocracy.  It’s based on competitiveness and greed.  Once you realize the dude CAN play, all the other shit becomes irrelevant.  But let’s not act like that huge “white elephant” or “8000 pound gorilla” isn’t in the room.  “White men can’t jump”, “Asian people aren’t athletic outside of martial arts”, “Black guys are superior athletically and aesthetically in sports and porn”, “Black guys don’t score well academically and are almost all ‘gangbangers with speed'”.  These are all dumb generalizations and stereotypes that are a part of the social and (at times) morally corrupt social fabric.  We have almost all at times heard them, and we may even have allowed them to creep into our psyche.  To act as if Lin is crazy or off-base for addressing this is delusional.  The road to the NBA had to be damn-near impossible for this kid.  He started from the bottom, but now he’s here…and the NBA is going to capitalize on the international appeal and the large following in Asia (particularly China) because at the pinnacle of this thing, it’s about revenue, profits, and economics.  Lin drives revenue, increases profitability, and is economically viable – all the social issues are in the rear view mirror.  I like the fact that he’s willing to still address them and talk about his journey, and we’d do well to heed his words and look at what he’s addressing.
 
 

Ray Lewis and Brian Dawkins Aren’t Cool: Love, Passion, Honor, and the Game of Football

Friday, October 28th, 2011

By Bradley Anderson

…And that is what makes them arguably top 10 greatest football players on the defensive side of the ball to ever play the game.  A number of professional athletes succumb to a “Joe Cool” attitude about the game they play for millions of dollars.  Years of being given preferential treatment, being celebrated for jumping high, running fast, throwing hard, catching well, and hitting have led them to a sense of self entitlement and arrogance that waters down their passion (if they ever had that passion to begin with).  The professional athlete has become so desensitized to the fans’ perspective and feelings, so detached from the reality of them playing a beautiful game, not for the money, but for the love, not to make it onto Sportscenter, but to be the very best they can possibly be.  Not to extend the contract but to create a bond of brotherhood amongst teammates.  These athletes enjoy the ancillary benefits of the lifestyle more so than the game.  Oh sure, they do a United Way charity event or two.  Why not?…tax break and good publicity for brand imaging.  But do they really understand the lessons and character conveyed to an onlooker by them being impassioned and taking pride in their every breath?  Do they understand that, yes it’s a child’s game that you make millions for, but it’s also the platform for the world to judge and learn from your every action.  Should you be a role-model?…NO.   Are you a role model?…YES.  The ideal and the reality, the reality and the perception.  Ray Lewis and Brian Dawkins are examples of players who appreciate every breath of life God gives them.  Every opportunity to put the pads on and play a child’s game.  Though they are vocal leaders, their actions speak the resounding volumes of their character, willing to follow as much as lead.  There is a story of Ray Lewis bringing water to his teammates during practice…a 12 or 13 year veteran at the time, bringing water…no ego…just a desire to build the bonds of brotherhood a sports team needs to be successful.

These two players have the happiness, joy, passion, intensity, and love of a 1st year walk-on in college, decades into Hall of Fame careers.

Ray: 216 games played, 215 started, 1492 tackles made, 18 forced fumbles, 19 fumble recoveries, 40.5 sacks, 31 INTs, 3TDs. 

“Dawk”: 216 games played, 215 games started, 892 tackles, 35 forced fumbles, 19 fumble recoveries, 25 sacks, 37 INTs, 2TDs.

They’re going to the Hall folks.  They are arguably two of the greatest at their respective positions.  I hope we all can learn to be as passionate and loving about life and our pursuits as these two dudes.  No “Joe Cool” ego.  Just love of life and the game. 

Bradley “B. Austin” Anderson of The War Room, for War Room Sports

Farewell to Entourage: All’s Well That Ends Well

Monday, September 12th, 2011

by Bradley Anderson

Last night, on 9/11, at 11:10pm EST, one of HBO’s greatest creations, Entourage, went off the air for the last time.  Doug Ellin’s masterpiece was just that, a masterpiece, because it managed to capture the male fantasy and combine it with very real emotion, logic, and general coolness against a dream-scape we’d all want to live in.  We laughed, we rooted for them, we thought about how we’d handle the Ferrari’s on the track, how we’d bend Sasha Grey up, how we’d live the lavish lifestyle.  We laughed at Ari’s clever, cruel, and masterfully hilarious quips…knowing damn well they were rude, cutting, and politically incorrect.  But we also knew at some level it represented what we may have been thinking.  And as the seasons progressed and “the guys” became almost like friends, the resounding themes of humor, fun, friendship, and loyalty against the backdrop of Tinseltown captivated us for 8 seasons.  The last episode leaves us with the storybook ending…and that’s ok…because Entourage was the ultimate fantasy.  “Drama” gets his movie, “Turtle” makes his millions, “E” gets his girl (and a baby), Ari becomes the good husband and father, and Vince gets “The Girl”.  “All’s well that ends well.”  What does this have to do with Sports?  Ari was/is going to bring an NFL franchise to LA, “Turtle” had a veritable who’s who of NBA, NFL, and MLB athletes investing in Don Pepe’s, and Mark Cuban made an impact like no other billionaire.  But most of all…”All’s Fair in Sports and War”.

Bradley “B. Austin” Anderson of The War Room, for War Room Sports

Happy For Mike Vick the Man, Disappointed in the Philadelphia Eagles

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

By Bradley Anderson

I am happy for Michael Vick.  Everyone loves a “Redemption Song”.  From a limited vantage point, he seems humbled, joyful, reinvigorated, and most importantly, eager to really LEARN the game of football, as opposed to depending on his RAW, UNBELIEVABLE athleticism to wow spectators, make games exciting, endanger his career, livelihood, and life. 

I think Andy [Reid]; having endured the heartache and pain of watching his own sons reap some of the same ills Vick did from sowing bad decisions into the most fertile soil of bad intentions, saw the potential in him.  He knew it was worth the risk to put him in a nurturing environment which would grow him amongst a brotherhood of men.  And now, we get to the fork in the road…a bad managerial decision that could potentially negatively impact the Eagles.  But Vick himself, I hope above all, Michael Vick the man is ready for the return to financial excess.  I hope he can manage the excess to create wealth for his grandkids’ grandkids. 

But more than that, here are the obstacles and the reasons this contract isn’t the wisest decision for the Philadelphia Eagles:

1) Currently, the Eagles’ offensive line is in need of a SERIOUS upgrade.  I think we’d all agree that Vick is in the top 5 or 10 athletes to EVER play the game.  And even at 31, having lost a half step, he’s still elite speed, athleticism, and talent personified.  And if HE can’t avoid getting PUMMELED in the pocket, you need to invest SERIOUS $$$ in your fat guys, otherwise you risk sledge hammers and boulders smashing up the pretty race car you paid all the money for.

2) Besides the eagles O-line being in shambles, Vick’s style of play is “balls to the wall”, “hell or high water”, “win or die”, and oftentimes outside of that pocket, Vick is engaged in near-death experiences.  Because he is able to get on the edge and extend plays and make plays with his legs, the risk of injury is raised exponentially.  Vick is RARELY (if ever) going to be able to complete a full season, and at what point do the aches and pains become permanent injuries that don’t heal?  At 31, playing as a fleet-footed athlete puts your career in jeopardy more and more with every play.  So, as management, ask yourself if you’re going to get enough out of him to get you SB wins?

3) Has he developed enough over the last 2 seasons to warrant top 3-5 QB money?  This is open to debate, but for me I’d say absolutely not.  a) He is 10x’s better with reading defenses, understanding coverage, and going through his progressions, instead of scampering like a scared deer or a neutered cheetah.  However, he isn’t ELITE at these things after only one season of improvement.  He still holds the ball too long, he still forces things a little (I know, who doesn’t?), but most alarming…MOST ALARMING…and the biggest issue I have; b) He cannot identify the blitzes.  When blitzed from the right, into his left, he folds like a deck of cards with a picture of Donovan in the Superbowl on them.  GREAT…even just GOOD QBs LOVE the blitz.  They want you to blitz.  They identify it pre-snap and even when they don’t, they can quickly see it coming, adjust, and either hit the hot read, or they are in sync with their slot guy, who also sees the coverage and the blitz, runs the appropriate option route, and the QB hits them instantly.  The Eagles don’t run option routes with their slot men (to my knowledge) and while we [the Eagles] have “hot” routes, Vick is wrapped up in thinking about the pressure rather than seeing it and making the quick read and throw.  During the last 3 or 4 games of the 2010/2011 season, Vick was EXPOSED…not as a fraud, but as a 2nd tier QB.  He is and always will be a tier 1 athlete, a tier 1 talent, and a tier 1 FOOTBALL PLAYER.  But he is NOT a tier 1, $100 Million ($40 Million guaranteed) QB…yet (If? When? Maybe? Could he? Will He?). 

I’m sure the Black protectionist, fans, and “stans” will be hounding me for not celebrating my Philadelphia Eagles for frivolously and prematurely throwing Manning & Brady money at Vick.  But forgive me.  I want to see more.  I’m a fan and supporter.  I have to be.  But I haven’t seen enough, and the difference between you and I, is that I know if you don’t spend your money on the O-line and D-Line (which we did…but just not enough), it doesn’t matter how many great skill players you have.

Bradley “B. Austin” Anderson of The War Room, for War Room Sports

Dirk Nowitzki: The Purity of the Game in a Champion’s Mind

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

By Bradley Anderson

2011 NBA Finals MVP

In the maelstrom of Reality TV and surreal comments that is the saga of the July 2010 Champions, the Eastern Conference Champions Miami Heat,  we are doing a disservice to the true NBA Champions and one man in particular…Dirk Nowitzki.When subtly comparing and contrasting stars and teams, Chris Bosh made a profound inference.  And if one reads between the lines, you know to whom he was really speaking: “There’s nothing extra.  There’s nothing super.  He [Nowitzki] was just himself.  And in these situations, I think when you’re yourself and you play your basketball, the best thing always happen.”

“He’s worked very hard, for a very long time and he deserves it.  I think we can take a page out of their book and really just pay attention to peoples’ work ethic and how much time they put into the game.  Obviously, what we did wasn’t enough.”

When the clock struck triple zeros and the horn sounded, and the Dallas Mavericks officially became 2011 NBA Champions, Dirk bolted for the locker room.   He didn’t join the growing group of elated celebrants at mid court…the team, coaches, cameras, and Dallas fans who had invaded American Airlines Arena as if it was the one in downtown Dallas.  He was overcome by emotion and tears, and wanted those moments to himself.

The Finals MVP had to be coaxed to take his bow…to even accept his award.  Dirk was humble and showed a measure of deference to his team and supporting cast.  The pinnacle of Dirk’s career, the culmination of all the millions of shots, countless hours, the ridicule of millions calling him soft, even more questioning his heart.  Dirk Nowitzki accepted all that from the basketball world and media, and in contrast to another gentleman at another press related event, he didn’t respond with a defiant, childish, brash, disrespectful F**K YOU, or even a “I Told You So”…or an HBC: “Y’all Musta Forgot”.  He merely accepted his station in history as a champion with humility and grace.

Dirk doesn’t seem to do much in the endorsement and advertising arena.  No huge sneaker contracts, no beverage deals, no shameless self promotion (shout outs to Chad and Evelyn Ochocinco).  He doesn’t want to be the billionaire baller.  There is no Nowitzki Brand, but now, there is a Nowitzki NBA Champion.

Here is the man that committed himself, along with his owner Mark Cuban to making the Mavericks a relevant franchise.  After decades of obscurity and laughing stock material, the Dallas Mavericks and Dirk Nowitzki “took their talents to South Beach!”

Bradley “B. Austin” Anderson of The War Room, for War Room Sports

3 Reasons for LeBron’s Dysfunctional Performance(s)

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

By Bradley Anderson

Ryan Jones' book on LeBron James

(The reasons lie with us as much as they do with him)

1) Throughout his amateur and professional career, I have not seen enough emphasis put on developing all aspects of LeBron’s basketball skills.  AAU, High School, and now NBA coaches are so enamored with his talent and athleticism, and the fact that they have a center’s size and power (ok a PF), a PG’s speed and quickness, a wing players athleticism, body control, and grace, they lose sight of preaching and teaching.  Be it the big things, such as footwork, positioning, back to the basket skill, or intangibles such as never quitting, always giving maximum effort, good sportsmanship, etc. I understand that you can’t instill “the killer”….”the mass murderer”….”the genocidal cool, calm, and collected megalomaniac” that existed within Michael, Larry, Earvin, Isiah, Reggie, Kobe, or even A.I.  I get that you can’t MAKE someone into a clutch player; however, there are so many little chinks in our gladiator’s armor that we all are bearing “witness” too now.  Flaws that have been pointed to, but the roar of the coliseum drown out any reasonable ear and the lust for the worlds “next”, combined with the “knee-jerking” “Sportscenter highlight”-thirsty audience that left no room for constructive criticism.  And much like a child left to be raised by the television set he/she sits in front of, so was LeBron coached by the people of the coliseum of his Rome: “stanleys”, lemmings, fans, and the media as much as he was placed in a disciplined, nurturing, ethics-building, skill developing, integrity-fostering environment.  We celebrated him so much and so fast, anointing him to be the “heir apparent” to a throne once sat on by a man who put the countless hours into honing his craft and developing his skill.  A man whose body was dashed upon the rocks of Detroit’s arena…a man so consumed with greatness and even further consumed by winning, that his sheer will could get him wins, when his 48-inch vertical and cat quickness exited stage left.

To the masses, fans, “stanleys”, lemmings, yes-men, enablers, scouts, handlers, managers, and coaches; I ask: “What now?”…and “is this all LeBron?…or do you have some level of responsibility and accountability in this?”

2) Fatherless Boys:  I don’t know much about LeBron’s father or his “father-figures”, who raised him, or what their value systems look like.  I do know as an intelligent young man, he often understands what to say, when to say it, and to whom to say it, in terms of the media and how it will resonate with the “fans”.  He is very conscious of his image, sensitive to his brand’s direction, and cognizant of the need to “say the right things”.  He has (up until recent times) been very politically correct.  I attribute this to his “handlers” (shout-out to Maverick Carter, you may want to change your first name right now or go by your middle name though), but also LeBron is pretty savvy in knowing who to have guide him.  All this being said, there have been a number of moments where his character development comes into question.  There are those times when he walks off the court without shaking hands with the opposing team.  There is the dancing and shucking and jiving in other peoples’ arenas.  There are the moments when his Momma goes “HAM” and “acts a fool”.  Who is there to guide him?  Who is there as a confidant to listen and offer sound, non-“yes-man” advice?  Who is there to be the opposite of coach Mike “Stanley Fan” Brown?  Who counsels him?  Who yells at LeBron? Who tells him to get his big ass in the post and get mean, and get aggressive against point guards and shooting guards? Who does he look up to and respect?  Has he had to grow, groom, and learn on his own for the most part?  Has he had to figure this out on his own as we all look on, heckling, laughing, supporting, hating, and lambasting him?  I don’t know the answer to these questions, but if he has, I actually think he’s done a damn good job of raising himself.  However, without that influence, he will never get to that “next level”.  I use one of my favorite players of all time: Allen Iverson.  Prior to Allen submitting to Coach Larry Brown’s tutoring, mentoring, scolding, and chiding, Iverson was running amuck.  But the brief, stern, fatherly, guiding direction of Larry got him focused enough at 5’10” and 155 lbs to take a team consisting of invalids, failures, intramural players, and trash-truck drivers to the NBA Finals.  I attribute this to the “father-figure” influence…that wise and guiding voice that tells you what you NEED to hear, not what you want to hear.

3)  Global Icon & Brand versus Greatest Of All Time (Winner):  We’ve reached a point in society where everything…EVERYTHING (and I’m speaking both in the world of sports and beyond) is about what will generate revenues, profit margins, and drive sales.  From 5th grade on (yes they nationally rank basketball players from 5th grade on…WHO THE F%#K cares who is the top ranked 5th or 6th grader?), the engine of the great marketing machines are trolling for that one stand-out player they can latch their claws into and create “The Player”…”THE HEIR APPARENT”.  The shoe companies are the first level, the dirtiest, and with the least amount of shame.  They begin by pushing athletic wear and sneakers on the kids’ amateur teams (AAU and the like).  These scoundrels are to amateur athletics what tobacco is to us all.  Well okay…perhaps a little strong, perhaps a little harsh, but you catch my drift.  It then expands to include food and beverage companies, apparel companies, and the list of things to sell, brands, and companies grow exponentially on the backs of these young athletes.  And what suffers?  The purity of the game? Definitely the soul of basketball?  Absolutely!  Is Dr. Naismith turning over in his grave, thinking of how it got from a peach basket to this?  Of course he is.  Beyond that though, the sport which was crafted to be for fun, joy, growth and development, good health, entertainment, and camaraderie, becomes about endorsements.  No longer are we concerned with the purity of the game, or even winning (let alone the other more noble concepts).  Much like Congress is subject to the whims of special interest (lobbyists own the Hill, you ain’t know?).  The sport is subject to the whims of big money corporations and his brother commercial mass appeal. And where does LeBron James fit into all of this?  He is just the latest, and quite possibly the greatest example of that nest, “The Player”.  He IS the personification of the machine. Where Michael Jordan and his generation were merely concerned with getting to the marquee colleges and playing for the best coaches, giving them the shot at a National Title and perhaps an NBA look, LeBron and his generation are courted for AAU “contracts” as freshman and sophomores in high school.  Where Mike was signing endorsement deals 2 and 3 years into his tenure, LeBron was in a Hummer his senior year and signed a $100 million endorsement deal with Nike before he graduated high school.  And can you blame him?  Growing up in a single-parent home, low-to-moderate income, and your talent is assessed a value before you can drive, vote, or drink.  I credit LeBron for being an intelligent person in knowing that his talent and abilities were his ticket.  While basketball is great, what it brings the global marketplace and the ability to be the salesman for ANY product may be paramount to being the Greatest Basketball Player to ever live.  As long as he’s in the top 50 (top 10 currently playing), he is worth billions and will reap that reward and success.  And so, his value system and priorities may include advancing his net worth into the billionaire category, and is that his fault or the world/marketplace he grew up in?  Michael Jordan, Wilt, Kareem, Magic, Isiah, Dr. J, Bird, Dominique, etc…they got their just due financially from being the greatest, arguably the greatest, or on the list somewhere near the top.  The opportunity to be the wealthiest sports icon ever never really crossed their minds, or at least it didn’t inhibit their play.  They wanted to win worse than they wanted that check and the “lights, glamour, glitters, and gold”.  When the scroll unfolded, it was the beast that rose and conquered the courts (shout out to Nasir Olu Bin Dara Jones), not the endorsers.  But who can fault James for the times he has grown up in?  We are a product of our environment.  What is more valuable, the riches and rewards of being very good, even great…or the triumph of reaching full potential and striving with all ones might for “GREATEST OF ALL TIME” status?  It is a conversation only LeBron can have with himself, and perhaps a select few wise men.  But think about the time and place and you will understand the man.

Bradley “B. Austin” Anderson of The War Room, for War Room Sports

Osama Bin Laden is Dead: The Rashard Mendenhall Tweets

Friday, May 6th, 2011

Rashard "Mendenhump"

This week, Pittsburgh Steelers Running Back Rashard “Mendenhump”…yeah…the guy that was caught having sex with Ben “Don’t say nothing just give it here” Roethlis-get-the-berger, went ahead and nobly, courageously, and with conviction, fell on his sword (pause) and signed the death warrant to his career by reaching into his heart with his mind (and his Twitter account) and pulling out these candid, profound, and incendiary words:

“What kind of person celebrates death?  It’s amazing how people can HATE a man they have never even heard speak. We’ve only heard one side…”

We’ll never know what really happened. I just have a hard time believing a plane could take a skyscraper down demolition style.”

“For those of you who said you want to see Bin Laden burn in hell and piss on his ashes, I ask how would God feel about your heart?”

“There is not an ignorant bone in my body. I just encourage you to #think

Let me first say that while I agree with his candor and his right to free speech, (hell, I even agree with his sentiments) one must take a catalogue of the things one has to lose in the court of public opinion when using Twitter.  It’s not about whether or not what you’re saying makes sense.  It’s about the fact that 80% of the world are “blind, deaf, and dumb…and mostly intrigued by the drum”…so they will not use intellect or depth to analyze your words.  They will take them as far as their limited perspective and truncated intellect will allow, and then…KABOOM!…the “Twitterverse” does the rest, as you hang by your proverbial neck, by the cords of misinterpretation, knee jerk overreaction, self righteous ignorance, and prideful, unjust condemnation!  SO…think before you press “send” on that tweet…and if it’s worth it to you, then go for it, because I, like most of the minority who understood “Mendenhump’s” position, applaud him speaking out.  However, the dominos have already begun to fall, considering the latest reports of Rashard Mendenhall being dropped from his endorsement deal with Champion.  Alright…that’s enough about idiots, Twitter, and the court of public opinion.

On to the REAL matter at hand…

The “celebration of death”.  What has changed from the day prior to our president’s announcement?…NOT A DAMN THING!  A martyr has been created.  That is all.

And anyone who is a spiritual person, whether it’s from an “Abrahamic” religion such as Christianity, Islam, or Judaism…whether you read the Quran, the Torah, or the Bible…NOWHERE is it correct to hate…NOWHERE is it correct to spread terror…and NOWHERE is it correct to celebrate death.  The people of New York, DC, and America in general suffered through one of the most horrific, publicized incidents in history…but hasn’t there been enough death? 

And now…I’ll end this with a quote from my esteemed colleague and insightful co-host, Devin McMillan:

“To be COMPLETELY real with you all, this [the killing of Osama Bin Laden] is only ‘justice’ because this is what WE (Americans) deem it to be. Do you all know how many innocent civilians America has killed over the decades that we’ve occupied the Middle East?  I’m not defending these jackasses, but things like 9/11 don’t happen just because someone woke up angry one day and picked America out of a hat.  So they retaliate against decades of us killing their innocent people in the name of ‘democracy’, but when they do indeed retaliate on our soil or anywhere else in the world (which is also wrong), we deem them ‘terrorist’, because it isn’t carried out by a government or government forces.  Those guys aren’t anything more or less than militia groups and JUST LIKE US when the roles are reversed, they deem these acts as ‘JUSTICE’ for shit we’ve been doing to them for YEARS. I GUARANTEE you all that our civilian body count in the Middle East DWARFS that of what they accomplished here on 9/11. EVERYBODY is wrong in this situation…America, Al Qaeda, EVERYBODY.  And if you call yourself a Christian, Muslim, or ANYTHING else, it is plain wrong to celebrate someone’s murder…no matter how you slice it…PERIOD!”

B. Austin aka Stokley Brad Michael aka Bradlege Cleaver aka BFK aka Al-Hajj Malik Al Shabbazz aka The Educated Brother from the Bank of The War Room, for War Room Sports

Brandon Roy: “Y’ALL MUSTA FORGOT!”

Friday, April 29th, 2011

In a time when athletes are more concerned with their global brand and market appeal than their craft…

In a time when athletes are just athletes…skill be damned…

In a time where “princess boyishness” is rewarded…

In a time where two grown men over 6’3” can walk down the tunnel of a basketball arena holding hands as a way to come out of the closet…I mean come off the court.

I salute Brandon Roy.  He wanted to play…wanted to compete…and when he couldn’t…he cried.  He cried in front of millions.  He shed a tear in a packed arena…because all he wanted to do was ball.  Now I’m probably going to roast him for it later.  I’m going to say to one of my Homies…”stop Roy’ing” (now short for crying, bitching, moaning, shedding a tear, etc.).

But in all seriousness, I applaud the love and passion…and why shouldn’t he cry if a dude named “Rudy” and another dude named “Patty” gets into the game in front of him?…former Rookie of the Year, All-Rookie Team (1st team) member, 3-time All-Star,  and 2-time All-NBA Team (2nd & 3rd team) member.

He humbled himself…apologizing for his tomfoolery…his “Amaechi-hood”…and then proceeded to go out and roast the Dallas Mavericks, scoring 18 points in a quarter…THE 4th QUARTER…OF A PLAYOFF GAME…with no knees…WITH NO KNEES!  And to all the detractors and those showering Brandon Roy with pity for his injuries, or hating on him for his actions…he looked y’all dead in the eye and said:

“Y’ALL MUSTA FORGOT!!!”

B. Austin of The War Room, for War Room Sports