Brian Wilson owes civilization an apology

Brian Wilson owes civilization an apology
April 3, 2013, 10:45 pm
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Brian Wilson started an unfortunate trend that should've died long ago but is instead alive and well thanks to Josh Reddick. (USA TODAY IMAGES/AP)

The most enduring hilarity of the fight over the Sacramento Kings is the idea that Sacramento should keep the team because of eminent domain, which is a fancy way of saying, “Possession is nine tenths of the law.”

Now before Kings fans get their delicates in yet another knot here, I’m only making a point they should know too well. Professional teams are meant to be stolen, and the NBA has been by far the most egregious offender. And the Kings might be on the verge of becoming the most moved team EVER.

From Rochester, N.Y. to Cincinnati to Kansas City to Omaha to Sacramento – that’s five stops. Atlanta comes close with four, but nobody else has more than three. In short, Sacramento stole the Kings, too. This is the most pilfered franchise ever, so the only logical way the city can make its case to retain the Kings is that it will do better than Seattle could.

The likelihood is that they won’t, but credit where due – the town has made enough of an impression that even if it can’t get this vote, it became more of a player for the next time around.


Whatever the hell the fascination in Oakland outfielder Josh Reddick’s beard might be, we can say this much: Brian Wilson owes the entire civilization an apology.


There is a new report out, courtesy Selena Roberts of, that claims that Auburn changed grades, paid players to stay for an extra year and violated NCAA recruiting rules in their 2011 championship season. That doesn’t even get into the racism charges, but you get the drift.

There is also a fairly damning report out, courtesy Brent Schrotenboer of USA Today, that NCAA President Mark Emmert is known mostly for seeing trouble coming in his job and then skipping off to a new and better job just before the hammer lands.

Then there’s Mike Rice and the cesspool at Rutgers. Then there’s Ed Rush and TechGate at the Pacific 12. And then there’s Mark Cuban’s grandstanding offer to draft Brittney Griner, Baylor’s 6-8 center who just ended her college career.

Take whatever side you want on any of these stories, but I know this much. Vince McMahon wants to know when his conference commissionership offer is coming.


The San Jose Sharks, that family-style restaurant with the hockey motif, decided to cross the line into whatever works by trading for the ever-flinty and rules-casual Raffi Torres Wednesday.

The deal, announced minutes before the trade deadline, arched some eyebrows, since the Fin has typically been a more-or-less law and order team. Torres finished off a 25-game suspension early this year for advanced miscreant behavior, and even Sharks fans who would endure nearly anything seemed hesitant to embrace the latest inheritor of Jamie Baker’s No. 13.

“Seemed” hesitant, that is. Remember, all politics are local, and your serial rulesbreaker is my irrepressible scamp, depending on the team’s record at any given moment. The Sharks have won six in succession, and if they continue to roll once Torres arrives, he’ll be downright adorable.

That is, if the Sharks find a way to change his media guide mug shot from his last stop in Phoenix. He looks very Raffi Torres indeed in the photo, so maybe a little softening at the edges will help.

On the other hand, the Los Angekles Kings’ web site trade tracker explained the deal this way: RAFFI IS JOINING THE SHARKS; MEANING HE PLAYS THE KINGS TWO MORE TIMES THIS SEASON, WHICH ISN'T GOOD FOR ANYONE.


And finally, England is a better place than America because it knows how to roast a coach when he is hired. Take Sunderland’s new boss Paolo DiCanio, who replaced the freshly canned Martin O’Neill. He is already being pilloried in the prints for being an avowed fascist in that most Italian of ways, while saying he is not a racist. And we wait until we get video evidence of a guy throwing balls at his players’ heads before we get all wound up. I mean, a non-racist fascist? That makes player abuse seem so, well, so common.