Stephen A Smith and Skip Bayless vie for leadership of the Dead Brain Cell Count Brigade daily on ESPN. I have to confess that most days I’m not likely to be awake during the morning hours and am even less likely to be watching television. During the French Open and Wimbledon I make exceptions and it’s now that time of year.
It’s also NBA Championship time, so during commercial breaks and rain delays this week, I’ve occasionally cruised through the ESPN talk shows. Of course, the quality of the discourse often reaches (or stoops to) levels that are liable to induce actual physical pain among any bits of living brain tissue that get within earshot (though I have to admit it still can’t challenge the average level of commentary during an ESPN tennis match).
Today, though, was a real winner.
In the process of defending Tim Duncan from one of Bayless’ frequent forays into absurdism-ad-nauseum–in this case the notion that Duncan needs to win the upcoming series and deliver an MVP-caliber performance in order to “keep” his place in the NBA’s all time top ten–Smith actually blamed the relative lack of success by the Spurs in the playoffs since 2007 on…wait for it…
I believe his exact quote was:
“Because we all know the power of women!”
Longoria was engaged to Spurs point guard Tony Parker in 2006–by which point they had been dating for two years–and married to him from 2007 to 2010.
Smith kept rambling on about the “distractions” which had caused the Spurs to lose in early rounds in recent years. He got Longoria’s name in there several times.
He did not, of course, mention that Longoria was dating Parker (in what was probably the most high profile romance in sports at the time) in 2005 and engaged to him in 2007. Those were two years when–despite the “distractions”–San Antonio won the NBA title.
In 2007, Parker, set to marry Longoria the following month, was so thrown off his game by “the power of women” that he managed to win the Finals MVP.
And, of course, when the real supposed “distraction” of divorce occurred in 2010, it was because Longoria caught Parker serially cheating on her–in the last case with the wife of one of Parker’s ex-teammates.
Look, the San Antonio Spurs won championships–when they did–because they played the best basketball.
When they didn’t win championships, it was because they didn’t play the best basketball.
One could parse all the reasons they won in any given year and all the reasons they lost in any given year and come up with a list reaching to the hundreds in each case.
Not one of those reasons involved Eva Longoria getting duped and shafted by Tony Parker.
The leadership of the DBCCB’s Sports Division is never truly stable. Smith…Bayless…Mike Greenberg…Colin Cowherd…Anybody working for Fox Sports Radio any second of any day.
The list is endless, the competition brutal and relentless.
But, for this week at least, Stephen A. Smith sits on the brass toilet alone.
(Incidentally, in Smith’s rant on Duncan’s secure place among the all time greats of the game, he listed exactly none of Duncan’s actual spectacular and highly improbable achievements–instead relying on statistics, the least impressive aspect of Duncan’s game. For the genuinely relevant info and talking points, you can scroll down a bit here and read my post of a few days back. That’s another enduring quality of the DBCCB. Even when they’re right, they can only be trusted about as far as you would trust Tony Parker with your hot wife….And, oh yeah, before I forget. Go Spurs!)