Thursday, January 19, 2006

The NBA gets another black eye.

Antonio Davis got suspended five games for going into the stands last week.

When you put it like that, it seems like AD didn't get enough. But I say he shouldn't have been suspended at all.

He rushed into the Chicago crowd because he thought his wife was being assaulted.

But thanks to Ron Artest and that band of idiots in Auburn Hills last year, he gets suspended just for entering the stands, even though it was for a good reason.

It turned out that it was just a misunderstanding, but you can't fault Davis for fearing the worst when it comes to the people he cares about the most.

Whenever I hear the term "zero-tolerance" in any kind of ruling, I get nervous, and usually with good reason. Why we can't treat situations like this on a case-by-case basis is beyond me. Seems to me that "zero-tolerance" is another way of saying: "We're too lazy to think."

Let me ask Stu Jackson, David Stern, and every member of the NBA league office: wouldn't you have done exactly the same thing if you thought your wife was in trouble? Damn right you would, if you were any kind of a man.

It's rare, but in this case, quotes from the athletes themselves are the most poignant:

Knicks guard
Jamal Crawford: "His wife and kids were up there. If you see your family in harm's way, you're going to go protect them. You're the man of the house, and at that point you're thinking like a regular human instead of an athlete."

Knicks coach Larry Brown: "That thing that happened in the stands had nothing to do with the two teams. That's a man concerned about his family."

Davis: "I witnessed my wife being threatened by a man that I learned later to be intoxicated. I saw him touch her, and I know I should not have acted the way I did, but I would have felt terrible if I didn't react. There was no time to call security. It happened too quickly."

In a league full of wannabe gangsters who refuse to practice or wear a shirt and tie to work, the guy who stands up for his family gets suspended. Shame on you, NBA.

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