Detroit Fight City: Motor City Teams Earning "Physical" Reputation

Ron JohnsonSenior Writer IJuly 25, 2008

People always ask me if I know Ron Artest. Does anyone really know the real Ron Artest? There's Artest, the gifted athlete. There's Artest, the failed hip hop mogul. There's Artest, the team player. And then there's Artest, the man who single handedly brought tears to the eyes of children all over the Motor City.

Three days ago, the two most talked about words in the sports world were "Detroit" and "basketball." Three days ago, one of the best franchises got a black eye. Three days ago, Ron Artest donned a sports bra and a ponytail.

In what could be described as the most embarrassing moment in Detroit professional sports history since the brawl of 2004, the Detroit Shock got embarrassed by Plenette Pierson as she was the recipient of a WWE takedown from Los Angeles Sparks rookie Candace Parker. In a battle that started on the other side of the court, Candace Parker dropped Pierson with an armdrag that started a bench clearing brawl that involved players and coaches.

The only bright side: There were no fans throwing drinks at Candace Parker when the fight was broken up. The bad news: Cheryl Ford, the player involved on the other side of the melee is out for the season with a torn ACL.

Now I can understand that everyone is calling this a moment where emotions just went over the edge. But everytime someone sees this, it goes back to November 19, 2004. The night where the NBA took it to the street. But the person who possibly lost the most because of the scuffle is Shock assistant coach Rick Mahorn who has a reputation for playing peacemaker.

As he tried to break up the brawl, Lisa Leslie claimed that Mahorn shoved her out of the way. Let me say that again: Lisa Leslie gets shoved by Rick Mahorn. Lisa Leslie is seven feet tall! Mahorn is not seven feet tall. Even if Mahorn did allegedly shove her, there is no way he deserved a player to come from behind and clock him in the back. I thought that Detroit had more respect than that.

We all thought that we had seen the last of Detroit getting bad press. But it seems that everywhere you turn, something about Detroit is leaving a bad taste in everyone's mouth. It's time for Detroit to either clean up their act or go down to the basement and start making the rules of Detroit Fight Club.

Either way, someone has to chill the rivalry down before it turns into a repeat of 2004. Because unlike Detroit fans, LA Fans don't forget or forgive.