Thursday, October 29, 2009

Pure Spite

It's not like Stern has ever adequately addressed the Donaghy problem. Yes, the league conducted a "thorough investigation" which proved that the same people that were blind to Donaghy's problems are absolutely sure that he was the only one doing it. I don't know how many people were convinced by it but in my opinion the money spent on that could've been better employed on any non-WNBA expenditure. Then Stern made a huge deal about hiring some retired US Army general to oversee all aspects of refereeing in a CYA move rife with symbolism regarding a "get tough" attitude. Plus Stern made a bunch of self serving statements about how he was "betrayed" by Donaghy which makes sense when you consider that Tim did something illegal and, in doing so, provided ammunition to people that contribute to this blog.

So now Donaghy has a book scheduled to be released later this month by a publisher under the Random House umbrella, until it was cancelled due to threats of legal action by the NBA. So much for clearing the air by having full disclosure by all parties. And this comes after Random House had already vetted the book according to Donaghy's liason to the publisher. Surely Stern knows that choice excerpts have already been printed by Deadspin and that his heavy handed action will only draw more attention to them; unless Stern is more clueless about the internet than even I am willing to admit.

So what is going on here other than Stern acting spitefully by utilizing the power of the league to keep Donaghy from earning money from the sale of his book. Is that acting in the best interests of the league? An argument can be made that it is but if the juicy parts are available elsewhere for free, then maybe more people will read them than otherwise and whatever damage that will allegedly happen to the league will be greater. No I think Stern is acting to punish Donaghy, which isn't his job and the owners should make that clear. Donaghy is paying his debt to society through his prison sentence and Stern should just act as if he doesn't exist. Look, I'm not saying that Donaghy is standup guy; from all I've read he's pretty much a prick. Still it's not against the law to be a prick. I can understand if Stern feels that he shouldn't ref in the league ever again because there's an integrity issue that even I can't ignore, although I wish they'd apply that criterion to a few current refs and drum them out immediately. And don't give me the Michael Vick crap either; as a dog owner I'm very disgusted by what Vick did but he's not in a position to harm the NFL by playing. And by being coached by Andy Reid you can make the argument that his sentence has been extended.

So Donaghy's statements are out there and are being commented on; and based upon a purely anecdotal sample, seem to be given a large degree of credence. So it's still a problem for the league but Donaghy isn't earning any money from it. Fannnnntastic.

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