I think we're beginning to see mounting empirical evidence that the packed NBA schedule is beginning to take its toll on the league's broadcasters. First there was the now infamous tirade launched by Ian Eagle against Mike Fratello. Then, there was Jeff Van Gundy flipping out on flopping and challenging the league office to act. But, perhaps the craziest NBA announcing clip of the weekend comes from Utah Jazz radio play-by-play man David Locke.
The Jazz, on the outside of the playoffs at the moment, were trailing Memphis by 3 in the final seconds. Derrick Favors had a chance to tie the game as he was fouled attempting a layup. But, instead of making the basket and having a chance to tie on an old-fashioned three-point play, Favors missed a bunny. This caused Locke, in his third year with the Jazz, to lose his mind.
It's amazing the emotional roller coaster one feels when listening to this, well... gobbledygook. There's anger, frustration, exasperation, despair, and then a hint of a return to normalcy at the very end. All in all though, it's fantastic that Locke let loose with exactly what he was feeling, even if he couldn't quite put it into words. And, Locke seemed to be a good sport about it on his personal Twitter page. Maybe Locke can use his now relevant gibberishing skills to appear on this famous game show. Or maybe, he really is slowly going insane from a stressful NBA season. Safe to say NBA broadcasters like Ian Eagle, Jeff Van Gundy, and now David Locke deserve a nice long vacation at the end of the year. Start counting down the days.
Ben, I appreciate your thoughtful take on the issue. I wish ESPN had shown such thoughtfulness in dealing with Federico and Bretos. True racism is terrible, and making stereotypical jokes over someone's race is terrible as well. I was disgusted by Whitlock's tweet and thought he deserved some measure of actual punishment for it.However, the "chink in the armor" phrase is entirely different. If Federico or Bretos HAD intended the double meaning of the word as an intentional pun, that's awful, a firing-worthy offense, no question. But they didn't. They were using an entirely different word that happens to be spelled the same, and ESPN's massive overreaction to that was appalling.Sure, Federico screwed up in writing the headline, even if he didn't realize the double meaning. That's worthy of a suspension for screwing up (along the lines of your excellent "Casino" example), but the guy never should have been fired. He's out a job and his entire career is in jeopardy just because the double meaning didn't occur to him.However, how ESPN treated Bretos is FAR worse: He loses a month's pay just because he used an extremely common phrase that has exactly zero to do with any sort of racial slur. Just because two words happen to be spelled the same doesn't mean we need to crush a guy for using the phrase when the subject happens to be of Taiwanese heritage.Of course the racial slur "chink" is disgusting, but many people have lost sight of this: That's NOT the word Bretos used. It just happens to be spelled the same. (And does anyone really think that Bretos, whose wife and child are of Asian heritage, really goes out throwing around racial slurs about Asians? It's preposterous.)The irony is that Bretos was being colorblind when he used the phrase, which is exactly what we should expect from anchors. Instead, ESPN punished him because he treated Lin like an athlete, not like an Asian-American athlete. The cowardly suits at ESPN should be ashamed for throwing Bretos under the bus.
It is absolutely disgraceful how Fox News racially slurs.....what? ESPN did it? You people need to,lighten up and get back to bashing Fox News and Rush Limbaugh.
@awfulannouncing call the PC police. ESPN used chink!! #pussy
The stodgy ass people who are bemoaning people being too PC are dinosaurs and they crack me up. Most people were offended by this usage. ESPN is not in the business of offending people. They can either take a stand to "not be PC" and embrace cloaked racism and avoid a firestorm. OR they can just not use the word chink regardless of meaning in regards to Asians. That's a really TOUGH decision
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@awfulannouncing Hes not Chinese!!!!!
I think this is likely not consciously intended, but race-related anyway. Yes, this is a common phrase to refer to a weakness in one's overall strengths. Still, I'm wondering when this was last the headline to characterize an athlete. Not a big deal either way.
@bradbenites I don't see how that can be unintentional..
@bradbenites thanks for the heads up
@awfulannouncing Man, I was really hoping that was a farce. I cannot, in good conscience, keep reading.
Great entry. Probably the best I've read on this site so far. So well put. Keep up the great work everyone.
@SC_DougFarrar what that's not how you would run your company? Strange.
@ebigs an interesting take, but you couldn't convince that there's even the slightest chance this was coincidental.
@SC_DougFarrar damn.... That's pretty f'd up.
@ClvlndK8 that's disgusting. How does something like that get signed off on at ESPN?
@lexus1scott I have no idea. We can't claim to be fighting racism when crap like that still happens! #ShameOnESPN
Oh give me a break. It was obviously innocuous and not intentional. People need to develop some thicker skin around here. I'm Asian-American and I think you're embarrassing the rest of us by making a mountain out of a molehill.
Rather than a poll, you should let people send in photos of themselves or that they find that basically show their reaction to this. I am debating between a facepalm, shaking my head, and a arms up looking at the skies pose.
This is seriously just really really really dumb and yes racist. Just alarming how dumb obtuse people can be.
The idea that someone could have pushed this live not knowing what would ensue is laughable. This is a fireable offense no doubt. Really shocked that this happened. Heads are going to roll.