NFL Draft Day provides a welcome rebuke to the NBA’s player empowerment era

NFL Draft Day provides a welcome rebuke to the NBA’s player empowerment era


Quote the Raven ... nevermore.

Quote the Raven … nevermore.
Image: Getty Images

It’s a widely known fact that Kyrie Irving is delusional. He’s a man of the people while walking among them unvaccinated. He thinks the Earth is flat, and has the NBA figured out even though he’s essentially a losing player without LeBron James. However, when he said he was going to keep “managing” the Nets franchise alongside Kevin Durant, owner Joe Tsai, and GM Sean Marks after getting swept out of the first round of the playoffs, he wasn’t wrong.

The team is going to appease Irving as long as Durant says so. The player empowerment era is good in theory and provides a lot of storylines, but a never-ending news cycle of unhappy players who are unhappy despite getting what they want is exhausting. You threw a fit to keep DeAndre Jordan’s corpse instead of Jarrett Allen, now you have to live with the consequences. Can’t we just go back to a time when all we had to get mad at were the teams for operating like bloodsucking businessmen?

Enter the NFL, a league that still doesn’t give a shit what their star quarterbacks think of trading their favorite targets. The first round of the draft provided some great trades and better apoplectic reactions. Receiver Marquise ‘Hollywood’ Brown got traded to Arizona, and Lamar Jackson lost his shit. He retweeted an equally irate Ravens fan.

Then he just posted “wtf” when Tyler Linderbaum was taken at No. 25. Jackson later clarified the acronym-ed cursing wasn’t about his new center, but I think everyone knows what he was referring to. NFL front offices are Nick-Saban-cutting-scholarship-players ruthless every offseason, and occasionally during the season.

On the other side of the spectrum, Cardinals QB Kyler Murray seems to be overjoyed by news of a reunion with his old Oklahoma Sooner target.

Bringing in a relatively risk-free wide receiver is probably the most placating an NFL team will do. Do you recall when Tom Brady thought he could retire and then join the Dolphins once the Bucs released him, but Tampa found out and said, “Fuck that, if you’re playing, you’re playing for us”? He was able to call a few shots with the Bucs because he’s the greatest quarterback of all time, and even then the team still pointed to a contract.

Pats fans absolutely took Brady’s side in his power struggle with Bill Belichick. However, the Hoodie seems to take pleasure in casting a child’s favorite toy in the fire.

The only people who believe Aaron Rodgers is the greatest QB ever are Packers fans, but their own franchise has started filing his roster suggestions in the garbage, which isn’t a bad idea. (Randall Cobb and Aaron Rodgers were the last humans on Earth who thought Cobb wasn’t washed.)

Here’s everyone’s favorite angst-filled football player — who has definitely never overreacted to the Packers and held them hostage with demands — on the Pat McAfee Show on the day of the draft reacting to the team trading Davante Adams.

“It was a little surprising with Davante — obviously when I made my decision, I was still thinking he was going to come back. I was very honest with him about my plans and my future and where I saw my career going, as far as how many years I want to play. But I felt like he was going to be back, didn’t obviously turn out that way but I have so much love for Tae and appreciate the time we spent together and definitely wish him the best with Derek [Carr] in Vegas. But that’s a big hole to fill.”

Can we bottle that despair and sell it? Bears fans would bathe in it. Rodgers opting to air his grievances on Draft Day is nothing new, and my guess is Green Bay isn’t surprised and doesn’t care. “Cool, man, you said you were coming back, so go make cringe-inducing commercials and shut the fuck up while we run the team.”

And wait until you read what Ryan Tannehill had to say about the Titans moving his best target in A.J. Brown to Philly. … Guys? What’s going on? I thought we had a reaction tweet? … What’s that? Tannehill sucks and no one cares what he thinks? That sounds a little harsh, but I’ll allow it.

I don’t know why I find blatant disregard for a QB’s feelings so refreshing, but it’s like an olfactory reaction to a pizza place you haven’t been to in forever.

It could be that I’m pro player and always root for them, so when team mismanagement happens, I instinctively want to blame the GM or president of operations. Now, I have to take into account a player’s influence when criticizing them instead of just their game, and breaking down LeBron’s acquisitions like he’s Brian fucking Cashman makes me want to pivot to accounting.

Or it could be that seeing millionaire athletes throw tantrums is hilarious.

Sorry, I’m done yelling at the TV. I’ll just go back to intermittently napping and occasionally rousing to wonder who got picked, grunt approval or disapproval, and nod off again.





Original source here

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About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.