An NBA superstar spent $500,000 to shame his billionaire scoundrel bosses into paying their employees' full salaries.
|Mar 25|| 2||9|
Good morning. Let’s give high-fives as if we are all Josh Hart.
George Sigmund Facius, print from Act V, Scene III in 1794 publication from John and Josiah Boydell
A play in three acts.
I mean, holy smokes. Tremendously bad ideas like a couple of billionaires cutting employees’ salaries 20 percent a couple weeks into an unprecedented NBA shutdown — and being the first team to take that plunge after huge uproar demanded that arena and event staff across the league get paid for the rest of the regular season — should die quick deaths. But this idea was so tremendously bad that it didn’t survive a day. And all credit goes to the very online Joel Embiid for destroying that bad idea in one small but huge act.
And then he capped it off by referencing a very online in-joke from Jeopardy!, saying “Let’s be responsible” and dropping a TTP. You can’t convince me there’s a greater NBA superhero right now.
By embarrassing his own bosses, who knows how many other NBA bosses he spared embarrassment? I wrote this in Tuesday’s newsletter:
Is this the start of a trend? Have Harris and Blitzker created a permission structure by which other NBA franchisees will now act?
Or can Harris and Blitzker be sufficiently shamed such that other teams’ ownership groups stay the hell away from acts like this?
Woj tweeted this before Embiid’s flying elbow:
The NBA is a copycat league in every way. Teams almost universally committed to helping arena and event staff get through the expected end of the regular season only because Mark Cuban announced he was doing it on live T.V. in a moment that went viral, and fans shamed teams that were slow to announce their plans. If the Sixers hadn’t gotten away with cutting staff salaries — and getting coaches to voluntarily cut their salaries when they are already facing potential firing in the offseason — other teams would have tried.
I think that’s done. Nice work, Joel. Hopefully the enormous $2 trillion federal relief package will calm down the financial crisis enough so that we can all retrain our focus on the ongoing public health crisis in New York, SEC Country and everywhere else in the world this insidious virus rears its ugly head.
But wait …
Tomorrow in GMIB.
Ziller Language School: The Unschooling
So Ziller Language School has gone more poorly than any of our coronavirus home school attempts, surely. I am abandoning the Google Translate And Pray model for a more participatory one for the rest of the week.
By the way, there was some confusion about Tuesday’s line, for I am an idiot. I put “get the f—k outta here, I got it!” in Google Translate but only mentioned the “get the f—k outta here” part in the post, which means something approximating “I have it” was added on the in-language lines. Nightmare.
So instead, I’m going to post a line and if you speak another language, put the translation in the comments. We’ll bump those up to the post on Thursday. If you want to also translate “get the f—k outta here, I got it!” to give Melo his proper due, please do. We’ll post some of those on Thursday too.
Today’s line, in honor of the next head coach of the Nets or Knicks, depending on whose dreams or nightmares come true: “Hand down, man down.”
Let’s hear it! How do you say “Hand down, man down” in the language other than English you speak?
Shout Out to Rodrigue Beaubois
He put 40 points on the Warriors toward the end of Steph Curry’s rookie season.
I like to think this performance inspired Steph going into the offseason, pushing him to work harder so he could one day be as good as Rodrigue Beaubois. It worked.
Heartbreaking video from Karl-Anthony Towns, who announced his mother is in a medically-induced coma due to coronavirus. Prayers out to her.
Must-read ESPN piece on how teams are dealing with the coronavirus shutdown. It includes an anecdote of James Harden shooting in the Rockets’ practice facility with John Lucas III when they are told the NBA has shut down practice facilities. Harden asks “what do we do?”
Beautiful. A 15-minute video from the Let’s Go Warriors crew breaking down Steph Curry’s absolute peak: the BANG! BANG! game. I will never forget watching this game in my living room with my kids.
The Olympics were officially postponed to 2021 on Tuesday. Gregg Popovich and Jerry Colangelo both reaffirmed their committments. But depending on the calendar, it could be hard for some NBA stars to participate.
I missed Zach Lowe’s weekly column last week because ESPN.com makes it very hard to find the content I want! Spoiler alert: Zach’s piece is, as always, good.
Steve Ballmer officially bought The Forum for $400 million (sheesh) which means he can build a new arena nearby in Inglewood and GTFO of the STAPLES Center. Getting out of the Lakers’ shadow is a huge step for the Clippers’ brand. Winning the 2020 or 2021 championship (or both!) would go a long way, too.
Nice piece in The Athletic on the Thunder doctor who hustled to stop the OKC-Utah game the day Rudy Gobert’s coronavirus test came back positive.
Marc Stein on the legacy of Boris Stankovic, the former FIBA Secretary General who helped get NBA players into the Olympics and was thus involved in launching the Dream Team, who died last week at age 94.
Lindsay Gibbs on how coronavirus could crush women’s sports and how fans can fight back.
Thanks for your support. Be excellent to each other.