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Discussion Starter #1
For those who can't figure out why a basketball talent like Rodney White is treated like a leper by NBA teams...

Three men, including NBA free agent Rodney White, face weapons charges after a uniformed Secret Service officer allegedly saw them randomly shooting in the air early Sunday morning while driving on Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway.

Police pulled the sports utility vehicle over at 24th Street and Connecticut Avenue in the northwest section of the city. Three men were inside the SUV, along with an unspecified number of guns and a knife, Secret Service spokesman Tom Mazur said.


http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=1875542
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I thought the Nuggets response to this matter was interesting:

"The Nuggets have no comment. He's a free agent. He's not under contract with us," said Nuggets spokesman Eric Sebastian.

Can't you just feel the love?
 

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When I was going to Northwestern I hated going to Northwestern basketball games because of the oafish fans who would ridicule their own team. It appeared that most of these fans were guys who probably never were decent athletes themselves and certainly weren't the type of elite athlete who likely played college sports.

As a former college athlete myself (although one who never lost a regular season game so we almost never heard derisive comments from the stands), I resented how these "fans" treated these players, as if paying for a ticket entitled them to unload all of the bitterness of their own athletic careers onto these poor college kids who for the most part were trying hard (except the ones who were throwing games :) ), but just weren't as talented as the other teams they played.

It sometimes seemed like these fans relished seeing these players fail, like it somehow validated them. I always found that troubling, and it made the game far less enjoyable for me. Non-competitive basketball and fans taking out their frustrations just were not an enjoyable mix for me.

I admit that I am guilty sometimes of doing the same thing, but except with a handful of players (such as Kobe Bryant), I try not to get any satisfaction out of watching players fail either on or off the court. Some do appear to get satisfaction from these failures, and I have always wondered why. Any thoughts?
 

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Originally posted by <b>Mikedc</b>!
One would get the impression that some think others' failures are our successes. I guess we've got to cling to something when we aren't (and don't even try to be) successful ourselves.
I think that is only a small part of it. Folks often seem to get satisfaction from our own players' failures, as well.
 

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If you allow for satisfaction from the failure of opposing players (Shaq missing free throws against us, Marbury tossing up an airball) then I agree. You should never want your own player to fail, unless that player is extremely hostile towards the team, the fans, and the city.
 

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Satisfaction from failures? Not really. I think that it makes for good emotional drama, just like mob mentality, like how lynchings and the stocks were entertainment, etc. One man's misery is another man's smugness. That might get into deeper, almost spiritual issues.

But for myself, when I saw this thread (and really, before this when I saw the article) I was pretty unhappy. Rodney White IS a good player with serious skills. He's not that much more of a thug than most NBA players, I'd bet, and getting the media spin against him probably doesn't help. An "unspecified number" could be as few as one or as many as ten. My feeling is that if it were ten, the media would roll with it.

http://johnrlott.tripod.com/op-eds/Athletesandguns.html

Iverson, Pippen and Barkley have been arrested with illegal gun possession. Of course, they probably weren't firing them up in the air. But if Barkley can throw people through windows, what makes him so much more special than Rodney White? The fact that he's probably a Hall of Famer?

When dealing with character issues, basketball talent really shouldn't come into play. That's like saying that someone is more trustworthy than someone else because she is tall, or that someone is deemed warm-hearted because he can eat a lot of hot dogs. It's a non sequitur. By the same token, off-the-court character issues can be much less of a factor when on the court talent overshadows it.
 

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Most schadenfreude (pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others) stems from envy or altruistic revenge. In the Rodney White example, you can see both. Some may be envious of his basketball talents and his downfall makes us look better in comparison. Secondly, randomly shooting bullets in the air is dangerous and should not be permitted in our society. Reading about him being caught causes us to feel that slightly more confident that unacceptable behavior will be dealt with in our society.

I agree with you, though, that seems to be something more. Schadenfreude can apparently be traced to stimulation to the section of the brain called the dorsal striatum which is linked to pleasurable emotions. It may not be easy to control.

This is a human instinct that is present at a very young age. Weren’t those old Roadrunner cartoons funny? What about somebody slipping on a banana peel? I believe our evolutionary past is responsible. Anything bad happening to someone other than ourselves or those we depend on makes us slightly stronger in comparison and, thus, more likely to survive. Being selfish this way has it advantages.

In today’s society, however, we are conditioned to believe that every member depends on one another -- that selfishness doesn’t pay. The truth of this is debatable. Do I really rely on Rodney White for my own well being? This is what makes our natural schadenfreude so confusing.
 

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Originally posted by <b>airety</b>!
If you allow for satisfaction from the failure of opposing players (Shaq missing free throws against us, Marbury tossing up an airball) then I agree. You should never want your own player to fail, unless that player is extremely hostile towards the team, the fans, and the city.
I am not talking about that at all. In those instance the opposing players' failures are helping your team win, so that is perfectly natural. I am talking about cases where another player's failure has little bearing on your team's winning chances.

I am talking more about the folks who seem to relish the fact that Team USA lost in the Olympics, seem to get satisfaction from players who get into trouble with the law, and even seem to be pleased when a player like Jamal Crawford had trouble in the free agent market. And not just pleased because it was strengthening the Bulls' bargaining position, but pleased I think because they really wanted to see Crawford humbled.

That is the attitude that I observed from fans at Northwestern, and it is an attitude that has always grated on me.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Dan Rosenbaum</b>!

I think that is only a small part of it. Folks often seem to get satisfaction from our own players' failures, as well.
I dunno... I think it's the majority of it. Failure is an orphan and success has a hundred fathers. The thing that bothers me about it is that what it really gets down to is folks exercising the opportunity to be bullies.

Like you pointed out the other week, Kobe was pursued and would be welcomed on the Bulls, so it's hard to fathom such gloating about a player's malfeasence if he were good (as is Kobe).

So what's the difference between a Kobe Bryant or Kevin Garnett and a Rodney White? In practical terms, there is none, except that the first couple of guys are much stronger ballers.

The weaker guy isn't getting "picked on" because he's a worse person... it's because he's a worse ball player. If he was a better person, he'd command the kind of respect that equally crummy people but better ballers command.

Anyway, I guess to me that sort of thing is distateful because 1) it's disingenuous- in reality the guys taunting would be doing everything possible to defend if only the player was better, 2) that disingenuousness itself is evidence that the guys taunting don't really take the "good guy/bad guy" thing as seriously as they say they do.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Dan Rosenbaum</b>!
And not just pleased because it was strengthening the Bulls' bargaining position, but pleased I think because they really wanted to see Crawford humbled.
Not sure what drove the NW fans to jeer their own team. I have been to a few games in my time and always thought the crowd was decent.

I think a lot of thie Crawford (and similar) hate comes from the fierce battles on the board. So external events that "prove" one's position are celebrated. That sorta sucks but just life on bbb.net.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Dan Rosenbaum</b>!
and even seem to be pleased when a player like Jamal Crawford had trouble in the free agent market. And not just pleased because it was strengthening the Bulls' bargaining position, but pleased I think because they really wanted to see Crawford humbled.
I was happy about that simply because the bulls gave him the perfect chance to show what he can do when they traded away Rose. He averaged 17 point on the 2nd worst team in the league and shot like crap and acted like he was unappreciated and that he was worth way more than he was. I just think he had a bad attitude and he can go **** himself.
 

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It appears that Rodney White doesn't limit his bad decisions to the basketball court.
I would hate to be walking in D.C area when the bullets started coming back to earth.
 

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Very disappointed in Rodney. Arenas and I spoke about this last night. Ah well, what a waste of basketball talent.

Jeez. I wish I could pull some of these guys aside and talk to them. Some of them are really good at blowing things. :sigh:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Anyone who honestly thinks this board applies a judgemental double standard when it comes to either "looking the other way" or condemning a player's actions based on their star power or who they happen to play for ought to re-read the posts about Garnett's and Nocioni's cheap shots on Rickert and Marbury respectively.

http://www.basketballboards.net/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=114272&perpage=15&pagenumber=1

http://www.basketballboards.net/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=113732&perpage=15&pagenumber=3

And while we're at it, I seem to recall a certain basketball icon by the name of Larry Bird being taken to task on this board as well for remarks he made in an ESPN interview earlier this summer about black and white basketball players.

There's some very creative, revisionist thinking being expressed within this thread. And I think this kind of thinking really discredits a lot of posters who are merely interested in expressing an opinion about basketball related issues. IMHO, this board does not descriminate. If you're associated with the NBA in general and/or the Bulls in particular, you're fair game. That includes but is not limited to Kevin Garnett, Larry Bird, Andres Nocioni and yes, even Rodney White.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Dan Rosenbaum</b>!
When I was going to Northwestern I hated going to Northwestern basketball games because of the oafish fans who would ridicule their own team. It appeared that most of these fans were guys who probably never were decent athletes themselves and certainly weren't the type of elite athlete who likely played college sports.

As a former college athlete myself (although one who never lost a regular season game so we almost never heard derisive comments from the stands), I resented how these "fans" treated these players, as if paying for a ticket entitled them to unload all of the bitterness of their own athletic careers onto these poor college kids who for the most part were trying hard (except the ones who were throwing games :) ), but just weren't as talented as the other teams they played.

It sometimes seemed like these fans relished seeing these players fail, like it somehow validated them. I always found that troubling, and it made the game far less enjoyable for me. Non-competitive basketball and fans taking out their frustrations just were not an enjoyable mix for me.

I admit that I am guilty sometimes of doing the same thing, but except with a handful of players (such as Kobe Bryant), I try not to get any satisfaction out of watching players fail either on or off the court. Some do appear to get satisfaction from these failures, and I have always wondered why. Any thoughts?
Obviously this post is targeted at a lot of posters, but in particular Kismet, as he started the thread.

Dan, you're obviously one of our treasured posters on this board, but this is not the first time you've sniped at him. Obviously you think he deserves it if you take the time to write the posts. It seems to get a little personal sometimes, and although I note your attempt to keep your criticism gerenal.

Kismet, in my opinion, is also one of the treasured posters on this board, but his optimism and belief in John Paxson and Scott Skiles seem to grate on some people here who don't support the administration the way he does. I choose to defend him for a moment because I think it would be a huge loss if he ever grew weary of such comments and chose to stop posting.

Also, I can see another possible motivation behind his post which you did not mention. We know that Kismet is a steadfast defender of John Paxson. Many around here have been clamoring for us to pick up a big swingman, and several have suggested Rodney White. By bringing this up, I see Kismet as not attacking Rodney for what he did as much as he is defending Paxson for not investing in Rodney only to have it blow up in his face. Perhaps this is inference on my part, but that's how I see it.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Kismet</b>!
Anyone who honestly thinks this board applies a judgemental double standard when it comes to either "looking the other way" or condemning a player's actions based on their star power or who they happen to play for ought to re-read the posts about Garnett's and Nocioni's cheap shots on Rickert and Marbury respectively.

http://www.basketballboards.net/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=114272&perpage=15&pagenumber=1

http://www.basketballboards.net/forum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=113732&perpage=15&pagenumber=3

And while we're at it, I seem to recall a certain basketball icon by the name of Larry Bird being taken to task on this board as well for remarks he made in an ESPN interview earlier this summer about black and white basketball players.

There's some very creative, revisionist thinking being expressed within this thread. And I think this kind of thinking really discredits a lot of posters who are merely interested in expressing an opinion about basketball related issues. IMHO, this board does not descriminate. If you're associated with the NBA in general and/or the Bulls in particular, you're fair game. That includes but is not limited to Kevin Garnett, Larry Bird, Andres Nocioni and yes, even Rodney White.
While I agree that the board does not discriminate to a highly detectable degree, it is true that our respect for players comes first and foremost from their ability to play basketball. Though this board does a great job with trying to see players as humans, the fact is that we still see them as players first. People who are great at what they do are often given get-out-of-jail free passes.

It's not quite a double standard, but it IS a bias and one that is not absent with any fan. We should recognize that it DOES exist.

I agree that we make the effort to be as understanding as possible, and the great thing about the basketball boards is that there's always a devil's advocate somewhere to present the other side; our more interesting threads are always the debates and not just the information.

Nevertheless, a bias does exist. Ray Lewis basically helped killed a man, but was acquitted and still has the wide respect of most football fans. If it was Cade McNown or some crappy no-name defensive nickel back, there would definitely be more condemnation. Why? Because our relationship with Ray Lewis and Cade McNown is the one of a fan to a professional athlete.

If we were to be totally objective, we shouldn't hate and love players at all. I hate Eric Snow, for instance, even though he's a great guy and a good leader. Why? Just because I don't like his game. I love Mikki Moore, and not just because he's a nice guy, but because I like his game. I love Rasheed Wallace, but I'd probably never be friends with the guy if he weren't an NBA player. So why do I love him? Because he's a freaking monster basketball player.

And that's the bottom line. We like and hate players because we are basketball fans, and they are the object of our fanship.

Again, I reiterate that we DO cushion that very much and haters have often admitted respect for non-basketball qualities. But it would be impossible to separate ourselves from the bias that makes us what we are: fans.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Darius Miles Davis</b>!
Obviously this post is targeted at a lot of posters, but in particular Kismet, as he started the thread.

Dan, you're obviously one of our treasured posters on this board, but this is not the first time you've sniped at him. Obviously you think he deserves it if you take the time to write the posts. It seems to get a little personal sometimes, and although I note your attempt to keep your criticism gerenal.

Kismet, in my opinion, is also one of the treasured posters on this board, but his optimism and belief in John Paxson and Scott Skiles seem to grate on some people here who don't support the administration the way he does. I choose to defend him for a moment because I think it would be a huge loss if he ever grew weary of such comments and chose to stop posting.

Also, I can see another possible motivation behind his post which you did not mention. We know that Kismet is a steadfast defender of John Paxson. Many around here have been clamoring for us to pick up a big swingman, and several have suggested Rodney White. By bringing this up, I see Kismet as not attacking Rodney for what he did as much as he is defending Paxson for not investing in Rodney only to have it blow up in his face. Perhaps this is inference on my part, but that's how I see it.
A perfectly fair and accurate assessment. As a born contrarian, I would love Kismet to be little more critical so I wouldn't have to be such a sourpuss. But I guess with MikeDC and DaBullz lending so much so support to the sourpuss camp, perhaps I should jump to the Kool-Aid camp. (Heck, I even have a few packages of Kool-Aid that I bought during the Bulls' first three-peat.)
 
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