Today the NFL handed down suspensions to a group of New Orleans Saints players for their involvement with the team’s bounty scandal.
Yesterday, Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo and Los Angeles Lakers forward Metta World Peace each sat out game two of the playoffs, serving suspensions for delivering a chest bump to a referee and a sickening elbow to Oklahoma City Thunder guard James Harden, respectively.
The night before, Detroit Tigers outfielder Delmon Young nabbed a suspension for assaulting a panhandler in New York while shouting anti-Semitic obscenities.
It’s like the league brain-trusts are trying to tell people that it’s against the rules to have your players and coaches offer monetary incentives to deliver elbows to unsuspecting referees while shouting racist bigotries.
Everyone makes mistakes. That’s the cliché, isn’t it? And lately, it seems that everyone is, in fact, making mistakes.
No one is perfect (there’s another one!) and I get that. Today I had cake for breakfast. I probably should not have.
But come on, professional athletes are getting out of hand. There are mistakes, and then there are these mistakes:
Everyone has a voice of reason inside their head. The one that taps you on the shoulder and says “Hey, yeah you, the one that’s going to do something really stupid. Um… let’s not do this ok? Alright? Cool.”
Apparently this voice has gone MIA from sports.
I incorporate the word sports into the last sentence because sometimes it’s not only one or two players but rather an entire organization. (I’ll leave the New England Patriots Spygate alone this time.)
The real breaking news today is that the NFL handed out a season long suspension to Saints linebacker Jonathon Vilma to match the one they gave to head coach Sean Payton. Other players, such as Anthony Hargrove, Will Smith, and Scott Fujita, received lesser sentences.
I knew something fishy was going on that season even while it was happening. Didn’t anyone else see the baseball bat Reggie Bush brought to every game?
All of this comes on top of the fact that the Saints are also being investigated for their general manager Mickey Loomis of being accused of listening in to opposing teams headsets last week.
Finally, the MLB has always been the trendsetter in player suspensions. They were suspending players before it was the “it” thing to do.
However, even the moms and dads of the world make mistakes.
Delmon Young should have been suspended a lot more than seven games. Young assaulted a panhandler on the street while making anti-Semitic comments. Actually laid his hands on him.
As of last Monday night he was suspended seven days without pay retroactive to last Friday.
Long story short, you can see Mr. Young in Uniform this Friday at against the Chicago White Sox at 7:05 pm EST!
Here’s a quick fact, Delmon Young has been suspended before in triple A. Fifty games for this little gem:
It’s terrible I know, but the league has deemed that transgression is forty-eight more games punishable than assaulting people on the street.
The point is that integrity, morality, and even sensibility are disappearing from the sports scene at an alarming rate lately. I don’t know if these guys didn’t get enough time-outs in the corner as a child but they definitely could have used a few more.
Please grow up and be professionals. Now where’s the rest of that cake..?