T-Wolves' 'Cream Team' roster is about selling tickets to white fans, black council leader says

cream team rect.jpg
NBA Cream Team (@NBACreamTeam)
David Kahn says the T-Wolves whiteout roster is nothing more than a coincidence.
In a piece published over the weekend, the Star Tribune's Jerry Zgoda and Dennis Brackin went there -- they wrote a story about the Timberwolves' historically white roster, which has been dubbed the 'Cream Team.'

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With 10 white players (five American-born, five foreign-born) and just five African-Americans, the T-Wolves' 2012-13 roster is the whitest the NBA has seen since the Bird- and McHale-led Celtics teams of the late 1980s, and two prominent Twin Cities African-Americans think it's more than a coincidence.

From the Strib piece:
Twin Cities black leaders have noticed [the Wolves' whiteness], suggesting the franchise strategically has rolled back the calendar by decades in a league that long has been at the forefront of diversity among America's professional sports leagues.

"How did we get a roster that resembles the 1955 Lakers?" asked Tyrone Terrell, chairman of St. Paul's African American leadership council. "I think everything is a strategy. Nothing happens by happenstance."

That strategy, Terrell and others in the black community believe, is to sell tickets to the Wolves' fan base, which is overwhelmingly white.
Terrell's perspective is echoed later in the piece by Ron Edwards, an African-American and longtime Minneapolis civil rights advocate:
[Edwards] said he remembers a day last winter when he was watching the Wolves and the only black player on the floor was Wes Johnson, a situation he calls "somewhat disturbing." His sentiments grew stronger, he said, as he watched the team's roster grow even more white this offseason.

"It raises some real questions to me about what's really intended," Edwards said. "I think, personally, that it was calculated. Is this an attempt to get fans back in the stands? Minnesota, after all, is a pretty white state.''

Terrell calls it "scary" that the Wolves would assemble a roster almost 70 percent white in a sport so dominated by blacks [78 percent of NBA players in 2011-12 were African-American]. For Edwards, the numbers trouble him by the "historical view," what he calls a "nullification of diversity and a reversal of history."
As you'd expect, David Kahn, Wolves president of basketball operations, denies that he, white head coach Rick Adelman, or white owner Glen Taylor consider race when making personnel decisions. Kahn pointed out that the Wolves targeted two black free agents this summer, Nicolas Batum and Jordan Hill, but both players ended up staying with the teams they played for last season.

"I have nothing to be defensive about... [the allegations made by Terrell and Edwards are] patently false," Kahn told the Strib. "Every decision we've made here has been intended to make the team as good as can be, as quickly as can be.''

Furthermore, the three African-American players interviewed for the piece -- Dante Cunningham, Brandon Roy, and Will Conroy -- each said they don't get the sense they're token blacks playing for an organization devoted to acquiring as many white players as possible.

"I've played on teams that maybe had all black guys and the feeling is just the same when I'm out there on the floor playing with these guys," Roy said. "The only problem we have is in the weight room, arguing over what music we're going to listen to."

KFAN's Dan Barreiro -- historically not one to side with T-Wolves management when controversy arises -- also lampooned the allegations made by Terrell and Edwards during his Sunday morning radio show and on Twitter:

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20 comments
Taylor Williams
Taylor Williams

the comments made by terrell and edwards are actually by far the most disturbing thing about this

staircar
staircar

"What can we do to get more butts in the seats?"

 

"Quick, sign Lou Amundson!" 

Joseph Drizzle
Joseph Drizzle

Waah waaah motherfuckers always need something to cry about....

alibubb
alibubb

Isn't basketball about skill, not color?

CRZ.
CRZ.

Also white?  Jerry Zgoda and Dennis Brackin.  And Aaron Rupar.  And me.

Juan Alejandro Machado
Juan Alejandro Machado

extremely ridiculous claims ... I for one feel that we should actually celebrate the diversity on this team and how even it is across the board .... the lunatics making these claims are discriminating against the foreign players and discounting their cultures. sorry folks but there is more to society then just black and white ... they need to use some actual reasoning and get over there BS claims!

Nicholas Rupar
Nicholas Rupar

1/3 African American, 1/3 White American, 1/3 foreign, pretty damn even if you ask me.

Rob Parkos
Rob Parkos

as Berra or Rubio would say . "JAJAJA" The Cream Team.... thats hilarious!

keny1
keny1

Typical.

 

They can't solve the problems in their own community, but these so-called "community leaders" have time to play the race card over the Wolves' fucking roster.

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

 @keny1  @atrupar You use racial slurs on those stories.  You are nothing but a racist troll.  You've already been banned once and you should be banned again.  You are scum.    No one but other racist losers want to talk to you. 

keny1
keny1

 @MicheleBachmann  @atrupar The fact that most violent criminals in MN are, in fact, black (% wise), does not make me a racist.  I simply look at statistics.  Statistics don't lie.  MB does. When you hear about a drive-by shootings, or a gang-related shooting in North Minneapolis, how many of these perps are white guys?  Answer: None.  It's a simple fact.  There is a problem within the black community and white people (and their tax dollars) can't solve it.  But the black community leaders are only worried about how many white guys play on the Wolves' roster.  Pathetic.  

keny1
keny1

 @MicheleBachmann  @atrupar Your attempt of making idiotic comments is not helping your reputation.  Go seek help now.  Admitting that you have a problem is the first step.

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

 @atrupar  @keny1 In fact if you click on homicide files and read every article about a black criminal you can see what keny is all about.  If you don't ban people like him the comment sections get unruly.  No one likes to read racist trolls.

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

 @keny1  @atrupar Please refer to the article "Eric Richard charged with murder in Stillwater bar right."  It was from this month.  You had to delete a bunch of keny's comments for racial slurs.  He also threatens me with sexual violence in those comments.   Why does he get to keep with the racial slurs?   This is his second ban if you go through it.  You have warned him many times.  

keny1
keny1

 @MicheleBachmann  @atrupar First of all, my comment above is not a racial slur; if it was, Rupar would have deleted it, which he didn't.  I was making a valid point.

 

Lie #2: I never told black people that they can't comment because of AA.  I don't know where she dreamed that one up.

 

Lie #3: I never threatened this imbecile.  She is obviously psychotic.

 

Lie #4: She states that she " would much prefer to tell jokes when I comment or actually discuss."  Go read her comments on the Mary Franson story that was posted on Friday.  I would hardly call that discussion or "making jokes".  She was verbally assaulting the commenter who was challenger her.  And she talks about being civilized.  Hilarity.  

 

However, she did tell one truth, though.  Yes, I have called her fat and ugly, but that is only because it's a fact.  

 

She obviously has severe mental issues that have not been addressed yet.  However, it is much better for her to vent out her frustrations about her miserable life on here and on other sites, rather than have her do it out in public.  So please, Rupar, do not delete any of her comments. By silencing this psychotic, she is the type of person who would show up at a Republican rally and start shooting at people because they don't believe in the same things as she does.  She is a potentially dangerous individual, and this is the reason why I do not post my real name on here.  If I did, I would probably get a knock at the door at 2 in the morning and she would be standing there with a shotgun in her hand, and the last words I would hear before she blew my brains out would be, "You don't believe in gay marriage??!!  Take this, you racist bigot!"

 

*shotgun blast*

 

As I once stated before, "MicheleBachmann" is a fitting handle for her.  Because just like the real MB, she is bat-shit crazy.  The only difference is that I would not be afraid if the real MB came knocking at my door.

 

 

mingtran
mingtran topcommenter

@MicheleBachmann @atrupar @keny1 : you flag people's comments for speaking their minds? I could see flagging actual threats, but come. What a bitch. Hopefully people start flagging all the lies and utterly retarded things you say.

MicheleBachmann
MicheleBachmann topcommenter

 @atrupar  @keny1 Dude keny has threatened me and makes racist comments all the time.  He's already been banned for it once but was back with a new name the next  day.  I'd be much more civil with enforcements against racism and homophobia in the comment section.  No civilized websites tolerate that.  On one story keny told black people they couldn't comment because of affirmative action.  You guys didn't even warn him.  They weren't even talking to him.  I mean come on.    I'm not trying to be a jerk but racist trolls ruin comment sections.  The racists and homophobes  like keny, cinblueland, east coast doug and kirk the conservative jerk have been pulling this crap forever.    Do you guys have rules?  I flagged their comments as offensive and nothing happened so I started telling them to fuck off.  I would much prefer to tell jokes when I comment or actually discuss.   I don't treat all Republicans rudely, just those jerks that use racial slurs.   The worst I do is use mean words, they have stolen my account and threatened me.  keny has already been banned once for doing this exact thing, why does he get another chance to type racial slurs?   I bet he called me fat  and other sexist crap huh?  Why does he get to keep doing that?

atrupar
atrupar moderator

 @keny1  @MicheleBachmann These comments were deleted for a reason. Be warned, lest the ban hammer make a reappearance.

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