Overreaction and Misinterpretation

Roy Hibbert and Paul George likely did not enter the post game media session thinking either of them would say anything that would cause a media-driven tizzy. But that's what happened after Roy made a joke and then followed that joke with his true feelings as to why he didn't get as many media votes for Defensive Player of the Year as he deserved.

The concern now for every fan of this series is the likelihood of the NBA overreacting to Hibbert's comments. No one, and I mean no one, should want Roy Hibbert suspended for the final game. But, not only is in the best interest of competition to have the big fella on the court, the comments themselves, when seriously considered do no warrant a suspension. Here's why:

First, the "no homo" comment was not an anti-gay slur aimed at any specific individual. It was used to separate himself from the comment he made about the Heat really stretching him out. In other words, he said please don't read that statement out of context and take the meaning that Chris Bosh has stretched out my anus.

That folks, is funny. Is it appropriate? No. Not at all. But if we are going to go to such an extreme as to punish off-color humor then our First Amendment means absolutely squat.

Second, the m-f line was directed at the national media for having a myopic view and focusing way too heavily on the large markets. For example, see ESPN's devotion to the Miami Heat. Do I agree with Hibbert that he was robbed in the voting for DPOY? Yes, I do. Do I agree that the national media has completely missed the boat on the Pacers? Yes, I do. Do I think the national media consist of numerous m-fers? Yes, I do. Do I think Hibbert should have called the national media m-fers after a stellar game? No.

As I have indicated on this site more than once, I am a lawyer. I am also a former television news reporter with 12 years of on-air reporting experience for both local and the national audience. I say this only to support my assertion that Hibbert was not technically wrong.

The big concern I have is if the League takes an extreme approach and doles out anything more than a monetary penalty for Roy Hibbert's colorful language. This approach will add immense fuel to the conspiracy notion and completely stifle the fan's ability to see genuine personalities.

I am hopeful that the League will be reasonable and not open up a giant hole in the middle of the Pacers' defense for the Heat to penetrate through repeatedly. No homo.

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