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Etan Thomas Attempts to Out-Blog Me

Dude is prolific, considering he has an actual job and all. And thanks to the Wizznutzz for doing my work for me, in terms of collecting links that D.C. sports fans might like to see and posting 12 billion words about them. Although their words are more made-up than mine. Usually.

Anyhow, WNTZ alerts us to two of Etan's more recent pieces. First, he writes on the commercialization of Christmas, and in praise of the movie "Nativity," while also adding to my blogging about the Wizards Party bus. This is what I've concluded: Etan is a lot more serious than I. Check this out:

However, throughout the nation, the real meaning of Christmas has been lost. I turn on the TV and am absolutely disgusted at what this once joyous occasion has become. I see little spoiled brats throwing tantrums in the middle of stores because they are not receiving their favorite toy. I see shootings and stabbings over play station 3's. I see families spending money they do not have in order to satisfy the need of some ungrateful kids, only to bring in the New Year in debt. I see parents fighting in toy stores over the last Tickle me Elmo Doll.

Wow. Good thing none of his teammates are into video games. Er. Etan also weighs in on Mary Magdalene. Yeah, yeah, we all saw the movie, with the self-flagellating Albino and the old guy with the cane and the evil conspiracy decoded via cut and paste. In any case, Etan did tell me yesterday that he'd be going to Gil's birthday bash to support his teammate, although I fear it might be a little too blingity for him.

Anyhow, even though I sort of take credit for the idea of Etan blogging for SlamOnline, I missed his last column, about the switch back to the old-new-old ball. Like any self-respecting lefty, Etan sees the issue not so much as Leather vs. Microfiber but as Labor vs. Capital, to wit:

Under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), which is the statute that governs the relationship between labor and management, management must bargain with the union over three things: wages; hours; working conditions. We (the union) claimed that the NBA was not entitled to make such a fundamental change to our working conditions, unilaterally, without bargaining with the union.

Later, he expands upon this:

What Commissioner Stern will attempt to employ, if we allow him to, will devastate the future of our league as we know it. Collectively, we have a strong voice, but if we don't understand the rules, how can we play the game? If we didn't understand that legally David Stern was in direct violation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement by changing the ball, we would have been rendered powerless. We would have been left to our complaints, which would have fallen on deaf ears.

What could possibly happen in the future could greatly exceed excessive technical fouls, the dress code, meaningless nagging about tucking in our shirts, wearing wrist bands below the elbow and the length of our shorts. If we don't speak up now, it could get a lot worse.

The league would love to transform us into the NFL, and they will continue to attempt to chip away at guaranteed contracts. During his attempt to gain "cost certainty," the Commissioner has previously offered during collective bargaining to simply pay one guaranteed amount and allow the players to divide it among ourselves -- so long as the amount is fixed in advance, and the owners need not pay even a dollar more than the guaranteed amount. In essence, that would completely cut out the NBA's middle class. (Interesting how there are so many parallels to a certain administration.)

Wow. Class war, NBA style. A Victory for One is a Victory for All, etc. Bosses Beware, and all that. What does George Will make of all this? And will Fred Barnes no longer write long essays in praise of the Wiz? Please?

By Dan Steinberg  |  January 4, 2007; 2:02 PM ET
Categories:  Wizards  
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Next: DCU Plays Do-Re-Mi


Um, based on the Ernie pic under your Super Duper Fly post, I'm guessing that a few more weighty Etan posts (clearly at odds with the general tone of the Wiz locker room chatter), coupled with continued good play by Brendan and maybe a Songaila sighting or 2, and he'll trade him straight up for a ham sandwich.

Posted by: Tickle Me Ernie | January 4, 2007 3:03 PM | Report abuse


"...Throughout the nation, the real meaning of Christmas has been lost...I see little spoiled brats throwing tantrums in the middle of stores because they are not receiving their favorite toy"

Not to be confused with the tantrums thrown by NBA players - "You want to pay me only $8 mill a year? That's disrespecting me & my family."

"I see shootings and stabbings over play station 3's."

Not to be confused with the shootings & stabbings at night clubs & other late night spots involving NBA guys.

"I see families spending money they do not have in order to satisfy the need of some ungrateful kids"

Like the $$ spent on Wizards/Bullets tix during most of the last 20 years?

"I see parents fighting in toy stores over the last Tickle me Elmo Doll."

I see Denver Nuggets & NY Knicks fighting over whatever.

Posted by: Natsman | January 4, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

To be fair to Etan, I'm not sure he's ever condoned any of the ridiculous things that other NBA players do.

I'm glad Etan speaks his mind about these things, even if it makes people uncomfortable. But I do wish he would spend some time lashing out at the NBA players and their lifestyle, as many in the league are the very portrait of materialism, greed, and general knucklehead-dom. But then again mostly I just wish he would average a double double.

Posted by: bryc3 | January 4, 2007 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Bryc3, I hear ya. Good call.

But Etan lash out at fellow players? Don't think so. He's a union guy who walks & talks in 4/4 time.

He's too busy penning these self-indulgent essays. Apparently, Etan believes that most "regular folks" will sympathize with NBA multi-million dollar athletes like him who complain about perceived threats to guaranteed contracts, and how the "NBA middle class" may be in jeopardy.

Note to Etan - the NBA middle class makes more $$ in a year than alot of folks make in 30 years. You're out of touch, dude, if you think anyone cares about this nonsense.

Toss this 3 billion word, self absorbed "essay" into the round file.

Posted by: Natsman | January 4, 2007 5:04 PM | Report abuse

so, if ET made his comments to a reporter (about Stern and the union), wouldn't he be fined? do they get away with saying things in blogs that they can't say out loud (of course, I think they should be able to say anything, I'm just surprised he's not in trouble for this one).

Posted by: j | January 4, 2007 8:27 PM | Report abuse

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