...but ill defend to the death your right to say it."
A quote I butchered that you may have heard(and been told that the wrong person wrote it).
In the past I have felt it was a pretty good summary of my beliefs. Not just on sports...but life in general. But lately ive really started to question the necessity of free speech. In life...but at the moment....as it relates to sports in general and the NBA in particular.
I was asked to be mod after id been here somewhere in the area of 10-11 years. Tasked mostly with limiting the free speech of those I deem unworthy of it at the moment for one reason or another. A task that went against my nature.
Having thought about it...there is an awful lot that people say on places like this...that is flat out not in the best interests of society as it relates to sports and sports fans.
And freedom of speech is not limitless in the real world. Try yelling "Fire" in a packed public room and seeing what the cops have to say when you tell them you caused the resulting panic.
Freedom of speech only goes so far as common sense and the greater good allow.
So....what goes too far...just in the sports world? What...is harmful to the well being of fans as a society?
Well...probably nothing. Nothing I can compare to the safety risk of inciting a panic or....throwing out profane threats in public.
But im not talking safety...im talking...public good. NBA fan good to be specific.
And when looking at it that way...id say all of the following are so untrue that the spreading of these ideas might justify the removal of freedom of speech just for the greater good.
1. Numbers dont lie. If you need that explained...I hate you.
2. *insert superstar* is the best/worst *insert skill 70 role players are better/worse at* in the league.
Often this is....worst defensive player in the league. Im not sure its ever been true. In my time here its been said of Dirk, Lebron(while he was on a team with Damon Jones), Melo, Nash, and many others...Nash may have been closer than the rest...but it was said around 05. You watch old Sam Cassell play D and conclude Nash(who at least tried) was worse...you are an idiot.
So why is it said? People who either dont know enough or are too lazy to articulate their reasons fall back on sensationalizing bullshit. And while its never gonna do the damage that other "We cant let you say that....." issues can in the real world...I feel it and things like it have led fans down a road where only big names come up as the best and worst everything.
Which may not annoy you much but as a student of history it bugs the hell outta me. I dont claim to have any kind of innate knowledge of the game...I am just really interested in it and read/watch a lot on both the past and present.
When someone makes the case that Lebron, Melo, or Dirk are the worst defensive players in a league with Brian Cook, Sam Cassell, Damon Jones once he did nothing but shoot....and they mean it? Its mind boggling. You have to ignore so many players that the statement loses all meaning. These people are just pretending nobody but superstars exist even though the statement about being worst....is ALL about the league top to bottom.
And that superstar superstar superstar shit is part of how we get to a point where nothing gets talked about but Kobe, Lebron, and Jordan. The respect paid to the total game...the people that play it...its at an all time low. Respect paid to the biggest stars keeps going up.
Which im sure is good for business but to me is bad for fans.
In 50 years I wont be surprised if you have to make an all star team to get your name on the back of your jersey. Be a bunch of guys known by their numbers playing with 1-2 stars with their names on the front and back of the jersey.
With the exception of passing im not sure a true superstar has been the best in the league at anything in years.
Maybe you could say Pierce or Kobe were the best at making contested pullup jumpers? Something like that.
But ball handling? Shot blocking? Rebounding? Shooting? Most of the game really. Big names jump out but....eh. Not many points are better ball handlers than Jamal Tinsley or a dozen no name guys I wont bother mentioning(feel free to mention them). TJ Ford on the Bucks was making passes that would fit into Magic Johnsons all time reel. Asik last year was rebounding nearly as well as Dwight Howard not that anyone cared.
If when we talk about the best...we exclude 90% of the league...why is being the best impressive? And if you dont have room in your head to consider people not hyped up by ESPN...why offer an opinion on who the best is? I wont hassle anyone for just wanting to waste a little time...talk some shit...have some fun.
But when you act like Jason Kidd was the worst shooter in the NBA before his second Dallas run(ive seen it said) when hes the #2 or #3 all time three point leader...im going to have something to say about it.
3. _____ is never gonna win a ring.
First let me say...I said that myself of Karl Malone in probably...1995. Maybe earlier. But I did it the same reason I hate seeing others do it now.
If im right im gonna rub it in on people who doubted me...and if im wrong ill pretend I never said anything. Nobody owns up. People just pretend nothing happened....unless they are right for the moment. Example:
Or dude who was going in on Dirk after he lost. People thought(and probably still do think) I hated Dirk. I never said he didnt have it in him to win. I was saying he was more clutch than his reputation as a failure years ago...even when pointing out said failures.
You cant call shit like that....you can say what will happen. But so few own up to being wrong...whats the point?
If you just change your name and act like it never happened....where did all those balls go that you needed to put yourself out there?
Ive had arguments with people telling me Jordan, Shaq, Peyton Manning, Eli, Elway, Kevin Garnett, and Lebron would never win.
Jordan is the only one the people in question really just copped to being wrong about. Rest are excuses. Shaq had Kobe...Peyton played the Bears....KG wasnt finals MVP...Lebron somehow had it easier playing back to back to backs in a short season...
Is nobody just...wrong? Im wrong. Often.
I thought Sean May, Adam Morrison, and a gang of others would be good.
I thought the Lakers would destroy the 04 Pistons.
I thought Nash would never play as well as he did in the 05 playoffs.
Whats wrong with that?
What is there to be afraid of? Yet so many people will just...flee their errors...
I remember a guy(A bulls fan sad to say) left for like 3 years because he made a "Tmac owns Kobe" topic mid game when Tmac was in Orlando and then Kobe took over and won the game.
You leave for YEARS the night you get clowned?
The kind of people who make those "bold" predictions topics arent just...hurting the sports. So it isnt a true "I cant let this stand..." deleting issue...but its annoying as hell. If you say it...stand by it.
So I ask you...whats on your "That is so wrong you shouldnt have the right to say it" list far as basketball discussion?
Am I the only one so annoyed by people I disagree with I wish I could remove their ability to speak?
I may be...and I do have the ability to remove your ability to speak...I just dont exercise it for the most part. But id really like to be a dick about it now and then. Just erase 70 posts a day and 20 topics till something has to be done about it.
Thus far...I satisfy myself typing for an hour at a time once every 3 weeks.
So...guess ill see you in 3 weeks. Well ill see every word you say....im here like...16 hours a day off and on. I just wont say much for a while.....and wish I had more "**** your opinion......this is getting deleted* in me like some of the other mods.
For the most part they do the right thing. Some of you really abuse the free speech thing....and those of you who do may have a lot to complain about(justified complaints probably) when I lose my patience. Im trying not to come in here like Rex Banner:
...and kill everyone who looks at me cockeyed.
Thus far I just rant now and then and its enough.
Till next time my ISH brothers and sisters(...brothers...lets just be honest)