Lamar Odom is currently hospitalized. He was found unconscious and unresponsive in a Brothel earlier this week. But the way Odom is described in the media as a reality television star and married to one of the Kardashians, is not going over too well with a host at ESPN.
Scott Van Pelt from ESPN’s Sports Center took offense to the way Odom is being portrayed. He made his feelings known in this statement;
I have to remind myself there are people who think of Jerry Rice and Emmitt Smith as ‘those guys who were on Dancing With the Stars.’ Not everybody views things through the prism of sports the way I do, and I presume you do as well, given that you’re watching this show. I mean, those are two of the best who ever played football, but if you frame things from the People Magazine perspective, it’s a different world.
To that end, I saw a tweet from rapper Bun B that got to me. It was about Lamar Odom, who fights for his life in a Vegas hospital. His plight was described across entertainment-based shows this way, and I quote, ‘Kardashian reality star in a coma.’ Now I can’t quote Bun B directly, but my feelings mirrored his — Kardashian reality star? No, no, no, no. Lamar Odom, unlike those for whom fame is oxygen, whose fame comes in the absence of accomplishment, his fame was earned: as Sixth Man of the Year, as a multiple NBA champion, as the result of his significant role with the Los Angeles Lakers teams and being a beloved NBA teammate and peer. Everyone across the league, it seems, loves the man. To read the tweets from the stars still in the league was to feel genuine anguish for a brother who has had an unspeakably difficult road, and who has struggled mightily to find his footing, post-NBA. “Passed out in a brothel” makes for a hell of a headline, and I’m sure quite a juicy episode of TV, but stripped to the foundation, it’s just incredibly sad. All of it. A man who’s dealt with so much loss, unable to find his way, who’s unfortunate reality becomes a plot line in alleged reality.
I understand not everyone watches sports, but ‘Kardashian reality star?’ His name is Lamar Odom, and we knew it, long before he got married on a TV show that we don’t watch.
I’m sure you’ve heard the news by now. Keith Olbermann is leaving ESPN. If you haven’t heard yet, read the next story. And that’s all I’m going to say about this. Keith Olbermann has something he wants to say. In short, Keith Olbermann said he’s “going to become Donald Trump’s campaign manager.”
Come back to your true love Olbermann. Your presence is greatly missed in the political arena. MSNBC lost their backbone when you left!
A statement From ESPN:
“While the show’s (“Olbermann”) content was distinctive and extremely high quality, we ultimately made a business decision to move in another direction,” the ESPN Faculty said in a statement. “We wish Keith nothing but the best and trust that his skill and ability will lead him to another programming endeavor.”
Olbermann’s contract was set to expire at the end of this month.
Stuart Scott passed away today from cancer at the age of 49. Below is ESPN’s moving tribute to the sportscaster who spent over two decades working at the station.
Another ESPN employee was suspended today, not for saying things that can be interpreted as defending Ray Rice, but for saying things that are definitely very critical of NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell.
ESPN commentator and Grantland editor-in-chief Bill Simmons went off on NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell during his podcast Tuesday, lambasting the commissioner for claiming not to have known what the Ray Rice tape contained:
Goodell, if he didn’t know what was on that tape, he’s a liar. I’m just saying it. He is lying. I think that dude is lying. If you put him up on a lie detector test that guy would fail. For all these people to pretend they didn’t know is such fucking bullshit. It really is — it’s such fucking bullshit. And for him to go in that press conference and pretend otherwise, I was so insulted. I really was.
That rant caused ESPN to issue the following statement;
Every employee must be accountable to ESPN and those engaged in our editorial operations must also operate within ESPN’s journalistic standards. We have worked hard to ensure that our recent NFL coverage has met that criteria. Bill Simmons did not meet those obligations in a recent podcast, and as a result we have suspended him for three weeks.
Another ESPN hose is suspended over the Ray Rice domestic abused issue. Following the return of Stephen A. Smith from his week long suspension, ESPN has now suspended Max Kellerman for comments he made about domestic abuse on a radio show.
Kellerman co-hosts a show on the station and is the co-anchor of ESPN TV’s “SportsNation.” He is also HBO Sports’ lead boxing analyst.
On the “Mason & Ireland ” show, which leads into his afternoon-drive program, Kellerman admitted to hitting his girlfriend many years ago.
ESPN would neither confirm nor deny Kellerman’s suspension. In a statement issued Friday afternoon and ESPN spokesman said: “Max Kellerman will return to ESPN-LA Radio and ‘SportsNation’ on Thursday.”
Following his statement about domestic abuse, a statement that spawned controversy nationwide, ESPN formally took steps to distance itself from Smith… at least for one week.
The company announced Smith’s suspension on Tuesday saying, “Stephen A. Smith will not appear on First Take or ESPN Radio for the next week. He will return to ESPN next Wednesday.”