Stephen A. Smith this week lost his mind and stormed off the ESPN First Take program in a classic meltdown over race. Smith attacked the Boston Celtics for elevating white coach Brad Stevens to the position of team president, and he tore NBA stars apart for not throwing a fit over the alleged racism in Bean Town.
The Celtics announced that veteran coach Stevens is moving up in rank to president. And white man Danny Ainge is retiring as Boston’s president. Smith went berserk because a black man did not get considered for the Celts’ top executive position and because black NBA players didn’t criticize the move.
Smith’s blood pressure soared as he slammed police for their brutality and Boston for its supposed racism. He said he feels like people constantly have their knee on the figurative neck of blacks “since the time you come out of the womb.”
Stevens’ elevation to Boston president is equated by Smith to systematic racism of black people who feel they are “consistently being minimalized and consistently being underappreciated and undervalued and in a world of sports where you have dudes with guaranteed contracts making money that secures their generation, generations of families. You’ve got folks hesitant to speak up. You’ve got players, NBA players, some of the most powerful people in this world.”
“When have they spoken up for black coaches, when? When have they spoken up for black executives, general managers, president of basketball operations? When has that happened? Lebron (James), all of them, everybody! Where the hell have they been? Nobody’s done anything.”
Smith screamed about the white privilege move by Boston:
“… So when are we going to say something about it? You know what, I’m going to walk away. I’ll be right back because I’m scared I’m going to say something that might get me in trouble because I’m pissed, I’m pissed!”
With Smith gone from the screen, former Boston player Kendrick Perkins backed the raging man in his absence. “I feel his anger. I feel his anger 100 percent. So this is why we’re so divided in the world and this is why you have the conversation.”
Perkins lumped another white guy, Tim Tebow, into the Stevens debate, saying Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer is “looking out for his boy. He gave his boy, Tim Tebow, a job when there are others out there that are more deserving and have the credentials and are still in the game or haven’t been away from the game like Tim Tebow. But he looks out for his kind and that’s what Stephen A. Smith is saying.”
First Take’s first-rate race-baiter Max Kellerman offered a race nugget, too. He accused Stevens of “failing upward and there’s some racial component to it. I think that’s the elephant in the room …”
Stevens won nearly 56 percent of his games in eight years as coach of the Celtics and reached the NBA Eastern Conference finals in three of the last five years.