D’Angelo’s Mess

Keeping with the Lakers theme here, we may as well talk about D’Angelo Russell. The saga that’s rocked our nation (in case you haven’t heard) involves the Lakers point guard secretly recording teammate Nick (SwaggyP/never plays) Young. In the recording Young admits to cheating on fiancée Iggy Azalea. The video was sent out as a Snapchat but only to a few people, claims Russell. From there, it was leaked.

Now that we have all (hardly any) of the facts, let’s rush to judge! That has been the case all over the internet, with Russell being the target of much scorn and criticism. What’s interesting in situations like these is there’s usually the rage of the internet machine without actual real life repercussions.

What’s happened in this has been the exact opposite. D’Angelo has been isolated by his teammates in instances on the court and off. He’s been booed in starting lineups and when touching the ball by his home crowd. His life over the past few days has been made a living hell.

It’s just too interesting to not note the irony. In April of 2014 V. Stiviano secretly recorded a conversation she was having with Donald Sterling the then-Clippers owner, exposing his racist beliefs. The backlash was predictable, owning an NBA team comprised of mainly black players. In that case, the media and NBA teams and management alike made it clear this was unacceptable and blackballed Sterling out of the league. Nothing was made of Stiviano making the secret recording, as she was just exposing the truth and figured people had a right to know (which I agree with). At no point did anyone blame her or shame her for coming out with the video.

However, D’Angelo did an eerily similar thing and he has been destroyed publicly and privately. Was it the right thing to do? I don’t know, but I also believe he didn’t mean for the video to get out. If that’s the truth, what do you have to be mad about? It’s then just a 20-year old talking to his teammate about said teammate’s infidelity.

But that’s not what happened. People came to the conclusion that Russell was ENTIRELY in the wrong and that Young was just an innocent person guilty of falsely trusting someone. When in fact this isn’t a story, and doesn’t matter, if he hadn’t cheated on his fiancée in the first place. While the way it came out was odd, the reality is if you’re cheating on your girl you’re putting yourself at risk. If you do anything more than hook up and actually go to eat somewhere, or shop? The ways you could get caught are endless. Then you add in the fact that you’re a pro athlete? Forget about it. It sucks for Young that it had to come out this way, but if you want to go your whole career having –affairs, side chicks, whatever you want to call them– it’s going to get out, just a matter of time.

And as far as D’Angelo goes let’s stop treating him worse than Aaron Hernandez. Kill me if I’m wrong, no not you Aaron, but I never heard a bad word uttered about the man that killed three people. It was always, “Oh I just can’t believe it”. Yes D’Angelo made a pretty colossal mistake, but he’ll learn. He’s a rookie and sometimes (all the time) a 20-year-old rookie living in the social media age can forget that what they take pictures or videos of is of interest to the public at large and isn’t the same as our group of friends posting a Snapchat story. At worst, it was intentional and malicious, and his road to maturity is a much longer one. And at worst, the fans who’d rather boo a guy for “snitching” and cheer a guy for cheating.

The message has been a resounding one. We want to get away with what we can get away with. We want to cheat on our wives and we certainly don’t want anyone meddling in our private matters.

Editor’s Note: That wasn’t sarcasm. As a Boston native, in the almost three years since he was charged, I don’t recall hearing anything insulting being hurled at Aaron Hernandez by anyone in conversation. But you’re right, this was worse.

Oh and this is the most attention the Lakers have gotten all year. Previously: sucking, Kobe sucking but choosing to reflect on his legendary career, and now the classic “bro code” “would you tell the girl” situation. The Lakers this year are KUWTK. They fucking suck, but boy are they entertaining to watch from a distance.

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