The NBA must end the tacit approval of gross behavior that is ruining basketball

How do you apply for asylum in an institution?

The games usually begin with the house lights turned all the way down and searchlights sweeping the floor, like a supermarket opening or a nighttime inspection of the prison yard.

Next, throbbing menacing music fills the arena, like war drums, bellows fanning the flames.

Then the reinforcement voice takes over and roars a hysterical welcome, one part ready to rumble, the other part screaming to join him in committing a bloody murder.

Then the fighters are introduced, beginning with the hateful, scornful visitors, followed by the loud, elongated, exaggerated names of the home-team players, the uniformed mob ready to storm the Bastille. The assembled crowd is incited to frenzy.

It’s unnerving, illogical, uncivilized, and increasingly ugly, if not downright dangerous. It’s an NBA playoff game.

The NBA, perhaps as part of their marketing plan, has invited everyone — PA announcers, patrons, players, and increasingly gamers — to show their most active, deepest instincts.

The crowd is prompted to demonstrate, audience participation simmers and cooks according to prompts. And there’s no prompt for the sober or drunk more expected than the guy who’s made a bet he’s going to lose or lose – particularly at the urging of the NBA, its teams and arena signage sponsors.

James Harden is introduced prior to Game 1 of the 76ers vs. the Raptors.
James Harden is introduced prior to Game 1 of the 76ers vs. the Raptors.

Even the exchange between players and fans on anti-social social media has become vulgar and inhuman as a matter of course. At games, exchanges between patrons and players have become profane, fanatical, and occasionally physical. Basketball games as holy wars.

Rough chants inspired by group obedience, weak wills and infusions of profit-soaked alcohol have become more common than a give-and-go.

Having a civilized conversation, maybe even about basketball, with your neighbor has been made difficult, if not impossible, by the obligatory chanting and other sensory deprivations through the giant arena speakers. Enjoy!

Celtics fans mock Kyrie Irving.
Celtics fans mock Kyrie Irving.

Hardly a game is played that doesn’t involve an ugly argument between and between players or between players and customers. They are quickly shared across social media and then YouTube, along with recurring messages: “By all means, aren’t you glad you weren’t there? Would I bring my kids to this? Where is the sport in this sport?”

And it’s way past time for Adam Silver, a decent and intelligent man who knows right and wrong, to do whatever he can, privately and publicly, to keep the NBA from becoming a pro-wrestling spectacle , orchestrated by Mr. and Mrs. Vince McMahon .

Tone it down, turn it down, demand more from players, especially on social media, and make it absolutely clear that these misbehaving patrons in their self-proclaimed alcohol-fueled minds are no longer welcome. They did not pay for the privilege of abusing players or the senses of the customers closest to them.

Treating violators with fines “for inappropriate language [or gestures] addressed to fans” or “referee” or “opponent” is not sufficient. Bad just keeps getting worse. Not everyone is as privileged as Spike Lee.

Nikola Jokic (left) and Steph Curry (right) exchange words during the Warriors' Game 2 win over the Nuggets.
Nikola Jokic (left) and Steph Curry (right) exchange words during the Warriors’ Game 2 win over the Nuggets.

And it’s about time the NBA voices on TV stopped ignoring what they and we can’t miss. Silence means condoning people’s most vulgar actions, it is tacit approval. All of them – all of them – need to stop pretending to play. What are they afraid of, the resentment of desensitized fools, players and fans?

They hear the chants, they see the near-fights, they read the tweets. You see fans near the pitch screaming hatred at the players’ faces. You know what’s going on and there’s no benefit in it. The compromise of attempting to enjoy such spectacles as are provided by television can only result in greatly diminished returns.

Save the NBA from what they allowed themselves to do. Bring back self-respect, dignity and decency to sport.

Fraternity responds to tragedy with brotherly love

“Brotherhood boys” are often criticized these days by those who condemn profiling while profiling.

The Delta Chi brothers from the University of Maryland could offer a compelling op-ed. In 2010, they lost a golf-loving brother, Andrew Maciey, to heart disease at the age of 24. What to do in his memory Host a golf tournament, donate the meager proceeds to a heart clinic. They did.

But why stop there? According to board members Dan Igo and David Stone (Class of 2008), Delta Chi grew up and started The Round of A Lifetime Foundation to raise money to enable golfers of all skill levels with heart disabilities to play America’s most famous golf courses , including Congressional and Pinehurst No. 2.

The charity pays for everything – flights, accommodation, meals, medical care and monitoring, and has now funded 11 golf trips for heart patients, including a transplant recipient, from across the country.

frat boys. Pooh.

For more information:

Reader Ted Damieci invited us to his wayback machine to study Rob Manfred’s “Ghost Runner” extra innings as performed by the 1962 Yankees:

“Below the 10th at Yankee Stadium, the real one (the one with fans in the good seats).

“Manager Ralph Houk sends Hector Lopez as the runner-up. Bobby Richardson edged out Lopez for third place. Tony Kubek hits a sac fly in the center. Game over.

“Do you think the managers would practice those pieces in spring practice? No, the Yankees of 2022: grab them and tear them down.

Tim McCarver, a longtime Mets, then Yankees and Fox TV analyst, recently called it a career and retired from his part-time job as a Cardinals announcer at the age of 80.

If there’s one thing McCarver did that will always stay in my memory, it’s what he did for Ralph Kiner — and Mets television show viewers — by elevating Kiner as a valued presence in the cabin rejuvenated.

Tim McCarver in 1986
Tim McCarver in 1986
Getty Images

In 1982, the Mets inexplicably hired Lorn Brown, who had called White Sox and Brewers games, to telecast on Ch recite to players and just kill time. His soporific style also put Kiner to sleep – almost literally. The programs were rated ZZZ.

In 1983, when McCarver replaced Brown, Kiner, like a magic wand, began to awaken from a deep sleep. Soon the stories, the strategies, and the laughter returned. From 1983 to 1995, Kiner, who died in 2014 at the age of 91, and McCarver became a great team.

And it was all thanks to McCarver.

Betting sites know the audience

A new TV advert for a sports book/casino boasts a new online site that offers real money casino gambling with just the touch of a mobile phone.

The commercial ends with a young man smiling and looking at his cell phone. The man – boy – may be in his early 20s but looks 18.

Regardless, the fact that he looks like a vulnerable dream-headed kid is no coincidence. These operations know what to do, who to do it to, and why.

Mock draft, anyone? Even before Tom Brady was picked 199th in 2000, there were plenty of reasons to be skeptical of pro football’s draft pundits.

Daryle Lamonica, the “Mad Bomber,” two-time AFL MVP and a looker who died last week at the age of 80, was the 168th pick in the 1963 NFL draft, the 188th pick in the AFL draft.

And it wasn’t like he was unknown to GMs and Scouts. For three years, he was primarily the starting QB for Notre Dame. They weren’t good teams – one finished 2-8 – but Lamonica was no stranger. The NBA must end the tacit approval of gross behavior that is ruining basketball


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