Brooklyn Nets hired Steve Nash as head coach on Thursday. Thus, ESPN had a conversation on race.
“There is no way around it,” Stephen A. Smith teased. “This is white privilege. This doesn’t happen for a black man.”
Quite a statement. “White privilege,” he claimed with no evidence.
There’s no proof Nash got to skip traditional coaching steps because of the color of his skin. If one is to assume why, which is what Smith is doing, odds are it is because Nash is an all-time great basketball player and leader.
Nash, the former part-time Warriors’ assistant is also familiar with Kevin Durant, the Nets’ superstar. Furthermore, both Durant and fellow star Kyrie Irving signed off on the hire.
Adding it all up, this is a logical, high-upside hire. Just not to Smith, who, instead, irresponsibly took a factless route and made it about race. I say “factless” because it’s inaccurate.
“This wouldn’t happen for a black man,” Smith claimed. Nope, never. It never happened for Mark Jackson, Isiah Thomas, Derek Fisher or Magic Johnson, did it?
It happens to former white players and former black players. The common thread is not skin color. It is point guards who project to be good head coaches.
This is race-baiting and misinformation spreading.
There is racism in America. But when the media cites racism for a decision it doesn’t like, it diminishes real, concerning racial problems. It’s a disservice to the cause Smith and others say they are fighting for.
Steve Nash didn’t benefit from the privilege of his skin color. That’s a conspiracy theory, one ESPN just promoted on its top daily studio show.