The OC Blog Back Issues Our Mission Contact Us Masthead
Sudsy Wants You to Join the Oregon Commentator

A Soldier Unarmed

Officials in the NBA are again criticizing their players–or rather, their players’ sponsors–for their “perpetuation of gun culture”. In a recent Nike ad, Kobe Bryant is quoted as making a reference to gun violence. Even funnier? That the AP story covering it decided to explain to readers what the chamber of a gun is.

Bryant’s blurb says: “I’ll do whatever it takes to win games. I don’t leave anything in the chamber.”

The chamber in a gun is the compartment that holds the bullet before it is fired.

Apparently NBA Commissioner David Stern has already “criticized the ad”. The AP is trying to make some big story out of this as this comes just days after Gilbert Arenas’ suspension for bringing a gun to his locker room. For some reason, it looks like the NBA and its fans are starting to believe that guns are a major problem for NBA players.

What is most interesting to me, however, is the manner in which the situation is being handled. The city of Cleveland declined to have a massive 10-story mural of LeBron James put on a building with the words “Prepare for Combat” below him. The advertisement, most likely for Nike’s Pro Combat line, is based on the premise of the “athlete as a warrior”–a theme most commonly found in football. Indeed, you can’t even watch an episode of ESPN’s NFL Live without hearing “in the trenches” “this guy is a warrior” “he’s ready for battle” or any other myriad of football cliches related to war. But the cliches don’t just stop at football, they extend to other sports–like basketball–as well. The point being, why is there a difference between how football and basketball are treated with regards to meaningless metaphors? (I still find it shocking Cleveland turned down anything LeBron wanted to do)

This Nike Pro Combat ad with Adrian Peterson has been out for months.

Of all the sports commissioners, I like David Stern the best. Mostly because he’s insane. He overreacts to everything, pisses off his entire workforce, and then gets away with it. Remember when he banned chains, Lugz and do-rags? Oh wait… he didn’t “de-hip hop” the NBA per se, he just made it so that everyone suddenly had to wear suits.

I’ve always thought war metaphors in the realm of sports were stupid. You catch/throw a ball. You do not murder people. But it makes fat 40-year old dudes on their couch get all testosterone-d up when you talk about that kind of stuff, so sports media has been doing it for years anyways. If David Stern is going to shit a brick any time a privately contracted company prints something completely separate from the NBA’s realm of jurisdiction, I can’t imagine anything else standing up much longer.

In fact, Kobe’s nickname is “The Black Mamba” which is one of the deadliest snakes in the world. Maybe Stern will ban snakes, too. You know, just to be safe.

  1. RacistTeabagger says:

    I laughed my ass off reading this on yahoo. The penis is the phallus protruding from the body of a male just below the hips.

  2. Rockne Andrew Roll says:

    Will someone please give me some earthly reason that David Stern is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations?

  3. Does that mean Masoli running down the street with those frat rat’s trinkets was “an act of war” ? I wish someone had that run on video…… would make a great Nike ad.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.