Did my eyes deceive me or did I really read a story that said the Cleveland Cavaliers will wear an advertising patch on their jerseys next year?
If that’s true, it breaks my heart.
And also makes my blood boil.
Although it’s nice that the sponsor — Goodyear — is local, I am appalled that the richer-than-God NBA is going to allow its players to turn into NASCAR drivers.
Word has it the Celtics, Nets, 76ers and Kings also are going to whore themselves out.
The NBA collectively made $5.2 billion two seasons ago (the most recent figure available). That is 79 percent of the gross domestic product of Kosovo.
The NBA has play money. Soon, quite likely, residents of Northeast Ohio will have to fork over half of the projected $140 million it will cost to upgrade the already highly serviceable Quicken Loans Arena. Add interest payments and we’re talking about $244 million — $122 million from you and me.
Given the kind of rarefied financial air these franchises inhale, the uniforms should be sacred ground.
Brand names are already plastered all over the inside and outside of NBA arenas and on the playing floors and the scoreboards and across the front of the scorer’s table and at the bottom of our TV screens and woven into the flow of the radio play-by-play. Can’t we at least leave the players alone?
Yes, I realize golfers do it. In fact, some of them have so many sponsor logos they might as well be wearing a fire-retardant NASCAR suit.
I realize U.S. soccer players do it. Their uniform sponsorships are even more blatant, usually in the center of the chest where the team’s name traditionally goes. If you didn’t know better, you’d think you were rooting for the Columbus Barbasols.
But imagine looking at old photos of Jerry Lucas wearing a “Standard Oil” patch on his Cincinnati Royals uniform ... or Wilt Chamberlain sporting a “Pan Am” logo ... or, God forbid, Michael Jordan flying through the air plugging “Enron.”
It just ain’t right.
Rebecca Heim Sovchik of Bath Township gives her favorite columnist too much credit. But that never bothers her favorite columnist.
Writes Sovchik: “You did a column (or two) about [University of Akron President Scott] Scarborough; he’s out. You did a column about Summa CEO [Tom] Malone; he’s gone. You write a column about this jerk in Michigan [“another Kent State”]; a few hours later, he resigns.
“Coincidence? I think not.
“So, I’d like to send you a list of names for future columns ...”
What is it with this town? Can’t anybody understand the concept of names?
The name of a building or organization is not supposed to take up a whole paragraph. It is supposed to be short, sweet and easy to remember.
Yet when the supe of Akron Public Schools lobbied last week to rename an existing program because it is getting $250,000 from Akron Children’s Hospital, he came up with this:
“Akron Children’s Hospital Academy of Health and Human Services at North High School.”
Or, for short, I guess: “ACHAHHSNHS.”
A sign spotted (and photographed) on top of a cabinet at the Northwest Akron Branch of the Akron-Summit County Public Library:
“The Fairy Tales have moved to the children’s non-fiction section in the 398’s.”
It’s troubling enough that someone working in a library capitalized the generic term “fairy tales” and added an uncalled-for apostrophe into “398s.” But I think we have a much bigger problem than that.
Bob Dyer can be reached at 330-996-3580 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He also is on Facebook at www.facebook.com/bob.dyer.31.