- Ray Rice was cut by the Ravens and suspended indefinitely by the league after video of his domestic assault surfaced.
- Atlanta Hawks GM Danny Ferry made racist remarks about Luol Deng, who is widely considered to be one of the nicest guys in the NBA.
Now, that’s a lot of ugly for one day.
The NFL’s handling of the Ray Rice situation has been dreadful from the beginning, and we shouldn’t be applauding their handling of it now. Yes, the NFL and the Ravens did the right thing, but only after the video was made available to the public, and for fear of public backlash. If that tape never surfaces, Ray Rice is still playing football, and that is a travesty. Ray Rice was cut and suspended because of TMZ, not because the NFL thought it was the appropriate action to take. This should have been the outcome from the beginning.
The country’s second most popular league, the NBA, is facing its second racial controversy of the summer. It began with Atlanta Hawks owner Bruce Levenson announcing he would sell his share of the team following the reveal of a racist email he sent in 2012. The email was discovered during an internal investigation launched after several team executives were shocked by Danny Ferry’s comments mentioned above. How Ferry still has a job is unfathomable, and brings a larger question into focus…what is the Atlanta Hawks environment like if he felt comfortable saying racist things on a conference call with his bosses? Surely, we haven’t heard the last of this situation.
Yesterday was an ugly one, but one of the things we love most about sports is redemption. So, here’s to hoping that the sports world redeems itself and reminds us all why we fell in love with it in the first place.