07 August 2014

ESPN's suspension of Dan Le Batard is lame

(Jeremy Powell)
All Dan Le Batard was looking to do was to do some harmless trolling. First, he wanted to pay for a full-page ad that would look like this in either the Cleveland Plain-Dealer or the Akron Beacon-Journal in the wake of LeBron James returning to Ohio. Although the prospective advertisement wasn't in the slightest offensive, and far from what is considered to be any standard for advertisement rejection, both papers rejected any and all of Le Batard's money. So Le Batard went a different route and purchased a billboard (pictured above) in Akron which was ironically covered on the front page of the (wait for it) Akron Beacon-Journal.

So no harm no foul? Not according to the folks at ESPN, who have promptly suspended Le Batard for two days because, well, I am not entirely sure.

First, here is the ESPN statement:
Dan Le Batard will be off the air for two days, returning Monday. His recent stunt does not reflect ESPN's standards and brand. Additionally, we were not made aware of his plans in advance. 
Let's contrast that with how Le Batard explained said stunt:
It's just fun anarchy. All meant in fun -- which, of course, will turn into Cleveland people getting filled with rage, poison and irrational hostility and want to use those billboards as a guillotine. Sports are so greet, the more irrational the better. This is a publicity stunt disguised as a movement. Please don't tell anyone there is no actual movement. 
This is so silly. ESPN knows who Le Batard is and what he does. It is why they have him his own show and air his radio show nationally. It is because he does stuff like this:


And this:


And this:


And this, as well as this:


So why did ESPN really suspend Le Batard? Because as we have seen time and time again, they love LeBron James. Had this been Chris Bosh for example, and he had left Miami and Le Batard sponsored a billboard, well you know where I am going with this one.

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