Gilbert Arenas, alumnus was involved in the now-legendary “pulling gun on teammate in locker room” story that may or may not have been a joke. Let me just put it this way – when I first heard the story, my immediate thoughts went to Playmakers and Any Given Sunday, overly-dramatic, hyperbolic dramatizations of professional sports leagues. My exact thought was:
‘let me get this straight, two professional athletes pull a gun on each other in the LOCKER ROOM? Even on Playmakers, even in Oliver Stone’s mind’s eye – that is utterly RIDICULOUS. No WAY that happened.”
As the facts are becoming more clear – Arenas labeling the incident a joke – the story still remains yet another pockmark for the oft-labeled ‘Thug League’ NBA. This is Stern’s problem, and whether or not it is indicative of paranoia of society from professional athletes – with good reason – there is a certain tinge of disappointment that I feel on a personal front.
From his days as a ,
Arenas never stopped working hard to improve his game. A lightly-recruited jitterbug out of Van Nuys Grant High School,
Gilbert catapulted to the forefront of Top Players in the League with magnificent performances and abundant personality. Fighting through difficult seasons and returning from frightful injuries, he still scored but did not recapture the joi de vivre. . .nor the winning influence that he had on the Wizards (nee, Bullets ), going so far as withholding is vibrant exuberance from the media.
This incident, regardless of what ‘really’ happened, does not paint Arenas in a flattering light and must be one of his most regrettable actions. In that city (homicide capital of America) on that team (again, formerly called the BULLETS, literally), did he really need to bring FOUR guns into the locker room? And whether or not the incident was a joke, Arenas was surely cognizant of the fact that this league has an extremely negative cachet, and is associated with violence even more than the NFL.
I really hope that Arenas is able to dig out from under this; a Stern Suspension may be the least of his concerns. D.C. has some of the toughest gun laws in America, and he may be facing time in the Pen.