Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Clemens Hearing + NBA Deals

The Clemens hearing was certainly interesting. The one enduring impression I have throughout this steroid scandal is that too many people want to play the game of naming someone either truthful or untruthful. In reality, there is a much wider spectrum of truth. We all tell lies sometimes in some contexts. And our own perspective shapes what we say. So it has always strikes me as silly when people want to put on the "truthful" hat or the "untruthful" hat and then make decisions based on that.

Perfect example is Jose Canseco. Everyone branded him a liar from the beginning, and thus dismissed the claims of his that made a lot of sense. Then when those turned out to be true, everyone seems to view him as truthful and a good source. To me, both perspectives are kind of silly. Rather than starting with an opinion about the person, look at an individual claim and whether that makes sense or doesn't make sense. This also goes for Andy Pettitte, who is being given the "truthful" hat when I think he has made some misleading and deceptive remarks in defending himself.

And this all manifests itself most in Clemens and McNamee. There's so much discussion about the credibility of both in general. And I don't care. They both have obvious tendencies to be dishonest. The issue is who is telling the truth about this specific question - whether McNamee injected Clemens with steroids. And on that specific question, I think it is significantly, significantly more likely that McNamee is telling the truth, regardless of any broader conclusions that one draws.

On the most recent NBA trade, Jason Kidd to the Mavs, it's bizarre to me how the Western Conference got so desperate in the past few months. They're mortgaging their futures by trading young for old, and bringing in huge contracts that don't match the quality of player they are getting. The interesting thing is that the beneficiary of this arms race may be the eastern conference, as a number of western conference teams are moving in the direction of the Knicks rather than the Spurs, which should be the model for sustained success.

4 Comments:

Anonymous mcory said...

My theory is that every NBA team feels like 2008 is "THE YEAR", the small window of opportunity between the Shaq/Duncan dynasties and the inevitable LeBron/Oden dynasties.

Fun facts that the NBA doesn't advertise:

- 8 of the past 9 NBA championships have been won by a team built around a #1 overall pick 7-footer (exception: Detroit 2004)

- Since 1987, NBA championships have been won by a team built around a #1 overall pick 7-footer or Michael Jordan (exception: Detroit)

8:23 AM  
Blogger nevs999 said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:30 AM  
Blogger nevs999 said...

I've worked in journalism/media for more than 20 years, most all of it as a sports reporter. With that, what planet does congressman Dan Burton (R-Indiana)live on?

If you believe what you read, the guy has made many a suspect decision over his thousand years in office (could these cats be any older?). Anyway, Burton screamed at McNamee about all the things McNamee told the media in years past that McNamee apparently made up. Hello, people aren't under oath - sworn to tell the truth - when talking to sports reporters, editors, bloggers, television cameras, you get the idea. You can say whatever you want to media dopes like me - you could very well be embarrased publicly if caught in a lie.

However, federal investigators will treat you a little worse if you make junk up for them. You're not potentially getting thrown in the hole for lying to a reporter.

I've always enjoyed reporting and writing stories, but I'm not naive enough to think story subjects always give me truthful, first-rate information. Reporters do what they can with the information provided to them in interviews and through asking questions. We can't control the answers.

Get a clue, Burton. You and your legislative cohorts looked worse than anyone during yesterday's hearings.

- Matt in Anchorage

11:36 AM  
Blogger nevs999 said...

Oh yeah, and on the NBA - Devean George? Devean George? Who is Devean George?

Hearing news about George blocking the deal is just another in the laundry list of reasons why I'll always love hockey and the NHL and loathe the NBA. I can't explain myself eloquently. It is what it is.

- Matt in Anchorage

11:44 AM  

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