We live in an era of hot takes. Being correct isn't as important as being noticed. Ratings triumph over truth.
It leads to a situation in which television pundits frequently spout off misguided and easily disproven snap judgments without understanding the true context of the situation. Why give an accurate assessment when a bombastic quote can drive exponentially more traffic?
Most times, they aren't held accountable. On Thursday, though, Damian Lillard wasn't going to let that fly.
Lillard recently announced that he would sit out games if and when the NBA resumed the season if the Trail Blazers didn't have a chance to qualify for the playoffs and compete for a championship. While that is entirely reasonable, former NFL quarterback Dan Orlovsky joined ESPN's "Get Up" on Wednesday and put his foot in his mouth in criticizing Lillard's decision.
"How can you sit there and go, ‘Nope, I’m not going to play, but understand that there are people out there that don’t have that choice," Orlovsky said. "They have to go to work. They have to go earn their money. I struggle with sitting here and going ‘you don’t come off, in some way, a spoiled and entitled brat by saying I’m not going to play."
Spoiled and entitled? Seriously? Lillard is anything but, and he didn't let that idiotic comment slide.
Entitled and spoiled? Mf watch yo mouth. My background , family, and character couldn’t be further FROM entitled and spoiled. I said what I said! https://t.co/yM30aU5xl2— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) May 28, 2020
Let's see. Lillard grew up in a rough part of Oakland. He didn't have a single D-1 scholarship offer coming out of high school. He attended a mid-major at Weber State University and built himself up to become the No. 6 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. In the time since, he has been named Rookie of the Year, made four All-NBA teams, selected to five All-Star games and become the face of his franchise. Not to mention, he continually gives back to his Oakland community, including hosting an annual picnic and donating to his high school.
What exactly is spoiled about that? And Orlovsky has the nerve to call Lillard entitled?!
Orlovsky, as Lillard reminded him, was a career backup.
You sat out ya whole career basically 🤷🏽♂️ https://t.co/yM30aU5xl2— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) May 28, 2020
Across 12 career starts, he posted a 2-10-0 record. He is most known for unknowingly stepping out of the back of the end zone for a safety. And this is the guy who we're supposed to view as an authority on the circumstances of a superstar?
Lillard doesn't back down, on the court or off of it. He didn't relent in calling Orlovsky out, and to no one's surprise, the comments eventually were walked back ... sort of.
Go back on TV w @realskipbayless and tell all those viewers that. And tell skip I can answer his question as well “what have I done” since y’all got so much to say. And I don’t know either one of y’all. https://t.co/4EPHPyEnaB— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) May 28, 2020
I suppose you can credit Orlovsky for acknowledging his mistake and apologizing, but I won't. If not for Lillard defending himself, the comments likely would have gone unchecked and further emboldened the hot-take culture.
Maybe Orlovsky will think twice -- or at least do a little research -- before opening his mouth next time.
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