Jewish Journal

Nothing’s sacred when sportsmen are such sinners

by Brad A. Greenberg

July 27, 2007 | 1:31 pm

This is not a religious post nor real reporting. It’s a satirical piece on Slate.com in which Joshua Levin ponders whether worse things could happen in professional sports than football’s second-highest paid player being indicted for dogfighting; an NBA ref being investigated for betting on games he officiated; a handful of cyclists being booted from the Tour de France for blood doping; and a first-base coach being killed by a line drive.

The answer: Yes. But man would it take some imagination. (Click here for an audio version on NPR’s Day to Day.) My favorite two:

The FBI is investigating claims that the New York Giants’ Jeremy Shockey deliberately dropped passes last season in an effort to win his fantasy football league. A person with knowledge of the league’s activities says that Shockey’s squad, “The Cleveland Steamers,” was stuck in second place behind “Jimmy Spencer Blues Explosion,” a team with Shockey in its starting lineup. The tight end’s suspiciously poor performances in the season’s final three weeks—coupled with a surprising three touchdowns from the Shockey-owned Marion Barber III—propelled the Steamers to the league title and grand prize, a $200 Dave & Buster’s gift card.
—New York Post, Aug. 4, 2007

Jason McElwain, the autistic teenager who won the nation’s heart by making six three-pointers in his first and only high school basketball game, was not really a teenager and was feigning his autism, White House spokesman Tony announced today. “The president was deeply saddened to hear that the young Snowman we knew and loved as ‘J-Mac’ is actually former NBA sharpshooter Tim Legler,” Snow said in his afternoon press briefing.
—AP, Aug. 5, 2007


(Photos: Reuters and ESPN)

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