Wait a minute, an NBA related Tuesday Teabag? We thought you hated the NBA, Machine? Well, all it took was a drink and dial from David Stern to get our attention. And when our attention’s focused, no one’s safe.
But first things first. Who are Tyrone Terrell and Ron Edwards? Well, Tyrone Terrell is the Chairman of the Twin Cities (that’s Minneapolis and St. Paul) African American Leadership Council, and Ron Edwards is the former head of the Minnesota Civil Rights Commission, and now host of a local TV show focusing on black issues.
Recently, both men came out and spoke against the fact that there are a lot of white guys on the Timberwolves. However, both men did a little more than just acknowledge their ability to state the obvious. They claim that having so many whiteys is intentional (read: racist). “How did we get to a roster that resembles the 1955 Lakers?” Terrell said in a statement in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “I think everything is a strategy. Nothing happens by happenstance.” Chimed Edwards, “I think, personally, that was calculated. Is this an attempt to get fans back in the stands? Minnesota, after all, is a pretty white state.”
Holy shit. Where do we begin? Let’s start with Minnesota is a pretty white state. Ok, no argument there. The Machine’s half-Italian and we’re pretty sure that qualifies as black in Minnesota. But the rest is just crazy. It’s more than crazy: it’s inflammatory and irresponsible.
So the Timberwolves have 10 (out of 15) white guys. In other words, 33% of the roster is black, far below the league average of 78%. Is it weird to see four white guys on the court on the same team when that team is not Princeton? Sure, it’s weird. But racist? Intentionally designed to mirror the fans? What other facts do you have to back up your claims? Oh, nothing. That’s not only crazy talk, but simply ignorant and, dare we say, racist itself.
First, let’s stop pretending that the front office only recruits the white. This past offseason, the T-wolves tried to sign Jordan Hill and Nicholas Batum, both black. Hill re-signed with the Lakers (can you blame him?) and the Trailblazer’s matched Minnesota’s offer for Batum. Somehow, that fact was lost on both Terrell and Edwards.
Second, if we’re merely playing the percentage game, blacks make up less than 13% of the U.S. population, but shockingly Terrell and Edwards have no problem that the average NBA team is 78% black, six times more than the national average. Shit, the Timberwolves, at 33% black, are still well above the national average. Of course it’s not just about percentages. It’s about winning.
Third, it’s not like the T-Wolves asked Big Country to come out of retirement, and signed John Rocker to play the 2 spot. Their white players, Kevin Love, Ricky Rubio, Andrei Kirilenko, Luke Ridnour, Nikola Pecovik (how many of those names sound Mid-western white?) are pretty good.
Fourth, lost in all this bullshit is the fact that the T-Wolves are a very diverse team. Five of their ten whities are foreigners, double the league average. They have players from Spain, Russia, Montenegro (sounds black), and Puerto Rico. In fact, you can make a good argument that the T-Wolves are the most diverse team in the NBA.
But for Terrell and Edwards, it’s not enough to be diverse. You have to be their kind of diverse. And if you’re not, then obviously the only answer is you’re a racist.
Look, we get that being a civil rights activist in a state where there are no black people must be boring. And are there enough black issues in Minnesota to have a TV show? We highly doubt it, although The Machine would love to be a guest. Hook it up! Bottom line, before you start playing the race card, do your homework. Because, when you don’t, and instead make bold, factually unsupported allegations of racism where clearly none exist, you sound absolutely moronic, and nothing more than a desperate and pathetic attempt to use race as a way to get attention for yourself.
Well, consider that goal achieved. So while you’re well on your way to winning a Source Award, congrats on the only award that matters and is truly color blind. A Tuesday Teabag.