Disclaimer: As University of Michigan alum I am programed to enjoy [love] college football (Go Big Blue!) but that’s about it. So I’m sure I don’t qualify as a “sports fan.” That may be my problem here.
As I drove into work this morning I heard on the radio that Greg Oden, one of the Portland Trailblazers, who has not played much (in my limited opinion) since the Blazers picked him up for an ungodly amount of money in the 2007 draft, due to injuries, signed a contract to receive just under $8.8 million dollars for the 2011-2012 season.
I don’t understand.
Can someone please explain to me why an almost 24 year old man who will reportedly sit on the bench most of the season [a short season at that!], who has not yet been cleared to practice, let alone play, with his team, will receive $8.8 million for his duties?
Record numbers of people are unemployed, searching for work, trying to pay their bills, feed their children and stay in their homes (if they aren’t already on the street) yet Mr. Oden will receive $8.8 million?
I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about the extraordinary salaries athletes receive. It’s just the way it is and I get that, I guess. They are very talented and provide countless hours of entertainment for the world. If I had been consulted way back when they started paying these ridiculous salaries I probably would have vetoed the whole idea. But sadly, they didn’t ask for my opinion.
I don’t blame Mr. Oden for signing the contract. I would have signed it too had it been offered to me. I just don’t understand why it was offered in the first place since he likely won’t be playing much.
Why is it so important to keep him in Portland? He’s always injured or recovering. The 5 or 6 games I’ve been to over the last couple of years have all been played without him and they’ve been fun to watch and be a part of. I didn’t miss him. No one else in the Rose Garden appeared to miss him either, at least not enough to ruin the experience. Couldn’t we, as a city, have risked letting him go?
Again I say: I’m not a sports fan, and that may well be my problem.
I simply don’t get it.