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How Would Mickey Mantle Have Fared in the Social Media Age?

ShutterstockMantleTussaudsOn the heels of Robert Lipsyte’s final column, The Big Lead’s Ryan Glasspiegel has posted a sparkling 6-4-3 email Q&A with the outgoing ESPN ombudsman. Among other things, he gets Lipsyte to highlight who his favorite current sportswriter is.

Another strand that jumped out to FishbowlNY occurs about halfway through the conversation. Glasspiegel notes how Mickey Mantle was rude to Lipsyte as a young reporter and wonders, in today’s Deadspin, TMZ and social media-driven media age, whether the gruff Yankee would have been quite so deified. Lipsyte’s answer:

“It’s a great question, Ryan, because by thinking about it, you start to think about how we are treating this generation of big, rich, handsome hormone-driven child men. Mickey was 19 when he hit New York in 1951, suddenly free of the Oklahoma mines. He stuffed his insecurity by screwing and drinking. His story – father issues, early marriage and kids, wild companions, no real guidance from the club – gets repeated every season, every sport.”

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Charles Barkley’s Crash Diet

The set-up: Charles Barkley on last night’s Inside the NBA, joking that he is “not going to eat another meal” until the 0-5 Lakers win a game.

The payoff, from the TBS Sports gang: a projection that is also the funniest TV interstitial you’ll see all week.

CharlesBarkleyLakersDiet

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Rick Reilly Recalls His Encounter with ‘Broke’ Jack Nicklaus

RickReillyPicMiracles do happen. In some cases, to the same journalist – twice.

As part of Sports Illustrated‘s 60th anniversary celebration, associate editor Ted Keith sat down with ESPN’s Rick Reilly to revisit the latter’s career-launching coverage of the 1986 Masters golf tournament. Miracle #1 is that Reilly had the SI job in the first place. As he tells Keith, when he traveled from LA to New York for a big Time & Life building lunchtime job interview, he was forced to borrow a sports jacket several sizes too big and knocked a glass of water into the lap of managing editor Mark Mulvoy.

Miracle #2 is even more astounding. Picking up on a tip that Jack Nicklaus, who would go on to win the 1986 tournament in dramatic fashion, was broke, a nervous Reilly shanked it way right. From the Q&A:

“So now I’ve got to talk to Jack Nicklaus for the first time in my life, I’m 28-years-old and my knees are knocking. I go up to him and I say, “Jack, I’m Rick Reilly from Sports Illustrated. We hear you’re broke.””

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Derek Jeter Gets a Donald Sterling Scoop

PlayersTribuneLogoIf this any indication of the kind of content The Players’ Tribune will be publishing, folks at Grantland and such may want to start worrying.

Under the simple, stark headline “The Boss,” LA Clippers star Blake Griffin shares some candid thoughts about his team’s disgraced former owner. The All-Star begins by recalling his awkward first encounters with Sterling at one of the billionaire’s annual “White Party” dress-up celebrations in Malibu. Then, he tracks back to this:

When I knew the Clippers were drafting me, the first thing I did was type Donald Sterling’s name into Google. The first hit that came up was “Donald Sterling is a racist.” I read an article on how he didn’t want minorities to live in his apartment buildings. My first thought was, Wow this guy is really, really a racist… How is he an owner of an NBA team?

My second thought was, Wow, these articles are from 2003 and 2008. I guess everybody already knows about this stuff and just doesn’t care.

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Eagles Fan Bradley Cooper Gets In New York’s Face

Bradley Cooper has taken a page out of the I’ve-got-your-silver-linings-right-here! playbook.

Ahead of this Sunday’s much anticipated Giants vs. Eagles NFL contest, one for which the PA home team will be wearing all-black, the actor and Eagles fan has narrated for Lincol Financial Field faithful a spirited back-at-the-Giants, pump-up one-minute promo. Footage tweeted out @Eagles and beyond.

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NYT Readers React to Adrian Peterson Op-Ed

MED_DebatingRaceCoverIn short order, Georgetown University sociology professor and esteemed author Michael Eric Dyson‘s New York Times op-ed “Punishment or Child Abuse?” started appearing in the paper’s “Most Viewed” and “Most Emailed” lists. Helped in that regard by ESPN Radio host Colin Cowherd, who urged his listeners this morning to take the time to read the piece.

Another sign of just how provocatively Dyson has cut into the raging debate about the scandal surrounding Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson is the churning quantity of reader comments. At press time, feedback had zoomed past the 600-mark to remind once more that real-time reaction is so much more compelling than the snail-mailed Letters-to-the-Editor of yore.

Here’s one of the scholarly points made by Dyson, who says he vividly remembers being violently punished by his father as a teenager:

Like many biblical literalists, lots of black believers are fond of quoting Scriptures to justify corporal punishment, particularly the verse in Proverbs 13:24 that says, “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.” But in Hebrew, the word translated as “rod” is the same word used in Psalms 23:4, “thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.” The shepherd’s rod was used to guide the sheep, not to beat them.

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Denver Website Rallies Broncos Fans Against Phil Simms

The handiest way to get a sense of why Denver Broncos fans have so quickly signed a petition asking CBS Sports to stop assigning former Giants QB Phil Simms to their team’s televised contests is @philsimmsquotes. The Twitter account live-tweets color commentary made by Simms during NFL broadcasts, and among the snippets highlighted during the Broncos September 14 contest vs. the Kansas City Chiefs is: “When you’re in this air, you’re lighter, you’re faster.”

PhilSimmsPetition

Local website The Denver City Page, sensing an opportunity, threw up a change.org petition protesting Simms’ “biased drivel” and in a matter of just a few days, the petition is closing in on 30,000 signatures. Many of the signature comments espouse the same, basic theory:

Scott Feiler: I’m signing because Phil Simms doesn’t give insight to the viewers. Instead he indirectly attacks the Broncos organization and fans. Most likely because of personal matters possibly stemming from his son [Chris] not working out when he was on the team.

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NYT USTA Investigation Continues to Reverberate

In case you missed it, there was a very good bit of U.S. Open-timed investigative journalism published Saturday in the New York Times.

USTALogo

Article authors Mary Pilon and Andrew W. Lehren found much evidence to support the headline “A Tennis Board Woven with Conflicts.” Starting with the fact that Jeff Williams, publisher of Tennis Media Company (Tennis magazine, tennis.com), sits on the United States Tennis Association (USTA) board and boasts, through his firm, the organization’s largest outside-contractor relationship.

In the article comments, Mark in Albuquerque, Raymond in Washington, D.C. and a number of other readers congratulate the paper for this investigative piece. Others bring up related USTA experiences and issues.

Today, it is the turn of Nonprofit Quaterly to chime in. Columnist Rick Cohen confirms the observation in the NYT article that non-profit USTA has not exactly been forthright about all this:

We examined the USTA’s 2012 Form 990 to note that that the conflicts of interest described in the New York Times article are generally not indicated on the form, the non-employee board members are all paid for their board service (between $6,000 and $26,000), and the executive director, Gordon Smith, pulled in compensation of $1,136,722 plus an additional $140,773 for service to related organizations).

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Baseball Purists Debate Shutout of Yankees Baltimore Origins

It’s not on the level of spiriting away an NFL franchise in the middle of the night to Indianapolis. Still, if we called Baltimore home, we’d be irked.

BaseballReferenceLogoPer Jonathan Zalman‘s WSJ write-up, some baseball purists are questioning the decision by website Baseball-Reference to truncate the New York Yankees from some formative, 1901-02 Baltimore history. From Zalman’s piece:

“It’s certainly not a decision I [made] unilaterally,” said Baseball-Reference founder Sean Forman, who added that he relied on the consensus opinions of a number of experts of that time period in baseball, including Major League Baseball’s official historian John Thorn, author of Total Baseball, the last official MLB encyclopedia, and Gary Gillette, co-editor of ESPN Baseball Encyclopedia. The pronouncement is harmonious too with the opinion of the Elias Sports Bureau, the official statistician for MLB, as well as that of the Yankees.

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Twitterverse Coughs Up Logos for Comedian’s Re-Imagined NBA Teams

Only in Bizarro World and on Twitter are there NBA teams with names like the New York Anxiety and Brooklyn Bloggers. The goofy monikers are part of a free-association shared last week by comedian Joe Mande. Now, per Dime magazine, there are team logos.

NYAnxietyLogo

Mande, via Twitter, invited folks to design logos. The one above is for his version of the Knicks; the one below, for his version of the Nets.

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