I don't know if it is against the rules, or if it is just plain out a bad idea, to write an article about an article written by a fellow Bleacher Report writer.
So I hope I'm not out of line. However, I couldn't help but be inspired by Casey Greer's "Josh Hamilton Vs. Ricky Williams: Americas Bigoted Media."
A well-written, well-thought out piece—yet an unfair poke at the media in my own opinion, as I usually don't buy into these kind of stories. I was simply going to comment on his article, but then I realized I had a lot to say.
I think it's easy to read into the Hamilton/Williams contoversy as a racial thing. However, I think you have to look at the success of the individuals at hand.
The NFL's fan base is much bigger than baseball's—by far. Any feel-good story the media can find for baseball will get put out.
In the grand scheme of it all, Hamilton is in a position where he is overcoming his obstacles, and he is succeeding. There is no racial bias to it.
If Ricky came back and led the Dolphins to a Division Championship or a Super Bowl, he would be featured in the same way.
Hamilton is doing well this year, therefore he is being covered by the media. Should we say—who cares if he is a junkie and a quitter? Who cares what he does?
Let's talk about real injustice here!
Justin Morneau won the home-run derby, and scored the winning run in the All-Star Game. You wouldn't know it by the way people are gushing over Hamilton.
I have a co-worker and good friend who is black. He brought up the same issue with Hamilton a few weeks ago, when it all started. He said what would be a feel-good story on a white athlete would be a detrimental piece on a black athlete.
I challenged him, because I really don't look at things that way. I wouldn't budge, so he brought up another example.
Well, when he showed me this, I was blown away. I could not ignore it.
Tell me, how Dirk Nowitzki is the NBA's MVP in 2006-07? How does Steve Nash win back-to-back awards?
There are many other players who are way more deserving—who just happen to be black in a league that is trying to change its quote, "Gangster Hip Hop Image," unquote—so much so that the league even implemented a dress code aimed primarily at black athletes.
I know it is a business. But who really cares what these guys wear to the game? I mean, in half of the interviews you see in the locker room, the guy isn't even dressed yet anyway.
Honestly, I would say that Steve Nash had a good year in 2004-05, and was the most improved player by far—but not league MVP. Nowitzki is a good guy and a good player, but not an MVP.
In 2004-05, Nash won the league MVP when Allen Iverson averaged over 30 points and eight assists per game, and was second in the league in steals? You mean to tell me he was not the MVP?
That year, Nash led the league in assists—but was on a good team. In terms of individual accomplishments, he wasn't even in the top 20 in steals—and was 40th in scoring!
In '05-06, it was pretty much the same picture. Kobe Bryant led the league in scoring with over 35 points per game, while Nash simply led in assists—on a good team again.
In '06-07, Nowitzki was 10th in scoring, 50th in assists, and 40th in blocked shots. Need I say more?
If the league wants these guys to get feel-good awards, they should nominate them for ESPYs.
Anyone who says that the guys weren't just the best "white" players in the NBA, the poster boys for a league trying to change its image and appeal to "White America," is lying to themselves.
I also want to be sure to thank Casey for his article, and the inspiration to write what I feel is a relevant piece myself.
I honestly hope this is not taken the wrong way. Nor do I want to offend anyone.
I personally don't like to talk much about issues of racism, as I truly feel that sports is one of the great things that has helped to bring many people of all races and cultures together.
However, this is truly the kind of situation you can't deny is wrong. I don't mean to take anything away from Nash or Nowitzki—they are both great players. But the numbers don't lie!
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