In Defense of Ndamukong Suh; Why I Hate Blake Griffin

How could anybody believe that this man would ever want to hurt anybody?

from Volume 1, Issue 3 of Ramblin’ On

So Suh me
Because of a few questionable hits, and especially his “stomping” of a Green Bay Packer on Thanksgiving, Ndamukong Suh has gained a reputation among football players and fans alike as a dirty player. Suh claimed in an interview this week, however, that he is not. “A dirty player, in my estimation, would be somebody that is going out there intentionally trying to hurt somebody,” he said. “I think there are some players in this league that do that. I’ve come across some of them. For whatever reason, that’s their M.O.”

Unlike everybody in the universe I sort of agree with Suh. Sure he plays hard. He also has a lot of energy and is very physical. But isn’t that what football is all about? It isn’t competitive ballet or synchronized swimming, right? Suh plays hard and physical in a physical sport and, far from being out of bounds, he’s only doing what he’s paid to do. Very rarely, if ever, has he stepped outside the rulebook with his hits or actions.

Suh goes on in the interview to say that his bad reputation was invented by the media and populace that just wants a story. I agree with Suh here 100%. It’s very popular to see him as a dirty player. It’s a great story, a way for people, once again, to point the finger at somebody and think they’re better than them to build themselves up.

All of the evidence that Suh is a dirty is exaggerated. To see his hits as “dirty” you have to look at it through the lens of assuming he’s dirty before you even see them. If you look at them all outside of that context they seem merely like a defensive player making hard hits on quarterbacks and running backs. But since Suh has that reputation, since it’s so fun to talk about how dirty of a player he is, it’s automatically thrust into that context and he’s automatically seen as a dirty player.

Lastly, about the stomping incident in Green Bay. That was a strange one, eh? Like everybody else I’m disinclined to believe that he didn’t do it on purpose. The one piece of evidence against this is Suh’s reaction to what happened. Once he got up he acted like what happened wasn’t that big of a deal; he wasn’t fuming or angry or anything. As quickly as he got on the sideline you can see him explaining himself to his coach – he wasn’t stomping, he was regaining his balance. It seems like a blatant lie but, if it is a lie, credit him for so thinking of it so quickly and continuing to go with it even after he got blasted for it in the media.

Blake Griffin is stupid and overrated. Kevin Love is awesome and underrated. Fuck Blake Griffin.

Not only is Kevin Love a better basketball player that Blake Griffin he is also much more handsome.

I’m really starting to get sick of everybody fawning over Blake Griffin. It’s one thing to talk up a really great player. It’s another thing to fawn over, and give ridiculous amounts of attention to, an above average player just because he can do some obnoxious flashy shit. And that’s exactly the story of Blake Griffin.

The most annoying part is that the flashy shit he does isn’t even that cool. I remember hearing last year that he dunked over a car and thinking, “Wow, that sounds really cool!” Then I saw the video and realized what he actually did was jump a few feet over the lowest part of the hood on a Kia. A fucking Kia! I’ve seen people running from the cops who have made more impressive leaps over cars.

Then there was his latest dunk this week over Kendrick Perkins. I kept hearing that this was the dunk of the year, maybe the dunk of the century, one of the best of all time. Like a sucker I was once again pretty interested in seeing it and was once again disappointed. First off it was the shittiest defense I’ve ever seen; Perkins doesn’t even leave his feet, like he’s not even trying, like he’s a defensive back in the Pro Bowl or something. Any basketball player with any amount of power could have thrust themselves as Griffin did and make that play. There was nothing extraordinary about it. Actually it wasn’t even a dunk: he can’t make it to the basket so he tosses the ball into the net. Not only was it not a dunk, it was about 4 inches away from even being a layup.

The icing on the cake is that while Griffin is getting unwarranted amounts of attention for doing flashy stuff that isn’t even that cool, Kevin Love is scoring more points, getting more rebounds, and being more important to his team and getting zero recognition. Typically, the guy who works hard gets shoved aside because he isn’t interesting enough, because he isn’t as much of a story, while the person who isn’t as good gets all the attention because he’s flashy.

Also, Blake Griffin is ugly and stupid.

Erik Ritland is a journalist and musician from St. Paul, Minnesota. His writings on culture, music (including his own projects), sports, religion, and many other topics are cataloged regularly at Ramblin’ On. You can reach him via email here.

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by David Branch on February 5, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    since your talking basketball again I feel forced to chime in… I love that many people are showing Kevin love…some love… but when it comes to Griffin I think people have to also take into account that the guys talent ceiling is through the roof. As far as love is concerned i think your seeing him playing in his prime right now, but griffin is still only in his second year. If (and this is a big if) love can keep up this kind of production, he’ll go down as one of the best power fowards ever, but (and this is just my opinion) Griffin has a shot at being one of the best players ever to play, and that’s what people get all excited about. And since they play the same position, the comparison is only natural. Now about that perkins dunk… He’s actually doing what he’s sposed to (perkins) He has his feet set, and is outside the charge line, so if griffin would have been more aggresively moving foward the refs might have called a charge. Instead he rises up over a 7 foot center and throws it down over the top. I could probably count on one hand the guys that can make a similiar play, and the only dunk I’ve seen that was better was Vince Carter jumping clean over the 7 footer… Now that dunk contest was lame, the dude that dunked 2 balls in 2 different rims was way better then jumping over the small part of a car, so I agree with you there.

    Reply

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