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Camden Yards and the Baltimore Protests for Freddie Gray

I was at the Saturday protests in Baltimore aimed at seeking justice for Freddie Gray, the young man who died while in police custody, his spine severed and neck broken. This column is about what took place inside Oriole Park at Camden Yards, where fans were told on orders from Baltimore’s Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Police Commissioner Anthony Batts to stay inside the stadium following the Os’ extra-innings victory over the Boston Red Sox, rather than risk the “violence” of protesters.

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Now That the Justice Department Has Struck Out, It’s Time to Put Barry Bonds in the Hall of Fame

Fifty-five million dollars. In sports terms, that’s not a great deal of money. It’s a healthy NBA contract or the kind of deal a Major League Baseball team would hand to a quality third baseman. But in the real world, as opposed to the sports world, $55 million is one hell of a stack. In governmental terms $55 million builds a new school. It reopens a public hospital. It repairs miles of roads. It saves lives. $55 million is also what the US Justice Department—mostly spent under Bush but finished under Obama—has wasted on what we can now officially call the failed prosecution of Barry Lamar Bonds.

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Cornel West Is Not Mike Tyson

As a sportswriter I am very sensitive to the use and misuse of boxing metaphors. Few analogies are either more powerful or more universally understood than comparing a public figure to an iconic fighter. Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, in a panoramic, painfully personal, deeply researched 10,000-word excoriation of Dr. Cornel West, published in The New Republic, has compared the 61-year-old professor to Mike Tyson.

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A Police Story Unravels: How Did the NYPD Break an NBA Player’s Leg?

At the risk of stating the utterly obvious, most black men and women who suffer physical violence at the hands of the police aren’t millionaires. They don’t have lawyers on speed dial and lack the resources of a well-funded union leaping to their defense. But most black men and women aren’t NBA players. In other words, they aren’t Thabo Sefolosha.

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