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ESPN Doesn’t Care About Unemployed Basketball Players

paulshirley

By now you have likely heard about the Paul Shirley-penned post, “If You Rebuild It, They Will Come” he wrote for the site Flip Collective where he takes what many consider a rather controversial viewpoint regarding the relief efforts in Haiti. Here’s a sampling of his thoughts:

I haven’t donated to the Haitian relief effort for the same reason that I don’t give money to homeless men on the street. Based on past experiences, I don’t think the guy with the sign that reads “Need You’re Help” is going to do anything constructive with the dollar I might give him. If I use history as my guide, I don’t think the people of Haiti will do much with my money either.

While Shirley has the absolute right to express his views – however unpopular on the surface they may be – the resulting backlash to the blog post didn’t sit too well with Shirley’s sometime employer, ESPN, who, clearly in full-blown damage control, has issued the following statement (via With Leather):

[Shirley] was a part-time freelance contributor. The views he expressed on another’s site of course do not at all reflect our company’s views on the Haiti relief efforts. He will no longer contribute to ESPN.

Boom, bitch. Shirley just got served. No longer will he be allowed to suckle at the teat of The World Wide Leader. But one thing remains troubling to me: ESPN decides to abruptly part ways with Shirley yet continues to publish the useless drivel spewed out by the likes of Rick Reilly and Jemele Hill.

Somehow, despite the tumultuous breakup, I assume both Paul Shirley and ESPN will somehow manage to survive on their own. Although I am unsure at this point where ESPN will be able to find someone who can write informative essays about P.M. Dawn with such eloquence and insight.

In the end, we can agree that one good thing will come out of this unfortunate situation: at least Don Ohlmeyer, ESPN’s gutless ombudsman, has a topic he can really sink his teeth into. You know, a way to marginally criticize something tangentially related to ESPN without having to go through the ugliness and awkwardness of actually performing the duties to which he has been assigned to perform.

If You Rebuild It, They Will Come, by Paul Shirley [Flip Collective]
PAUL SHIRLEY DUMPED BY ESPN [With Leather]
Proud to tout P.M. Dawn, 17 years late [ESPN]