JENNIFER LUDDEN, HOST:
It the time now for sports.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
LUDDEN: It’s a new season for the NFL. But it’s facing some identical controversies. And basketball exceptional Lindsay Whalen may be retiring from gambling, but she’s no longer going some distance. NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman is with us this week. Hi, Tom.
TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: Hi, Jennifer – desirable to speak to you.
LUDDEN: Always right to speak to you – it is a week of NFL preseason. And already, we see a few gamers hold those protests for the duration of the national anthem. They commenced in 2016 to attract attention to police mistreatment of minorities and social inequality. So the league and the players union, they – they nonetheless cannot figure out how to agree on this.
GOLDMAN: They cannot. You realize they have been protecting conferences for a few weeks. The discussions are personal. So we don’t know what’s being proposed. But you wish there’s some innovative concept taking place past a few resolutions that both say the players can protest all through the anthem or can’t because humans are so divided in this problem of protesting throughout the anthem. You’re sure to anger whichever facet seems to have misplaced.
LUDDEN: Well, someone had a concept. Former player and Hall of Fame train Tony Dungy counseled something this week. Give gamers airtime.
GOLDMAN: Yeah. He’s been announcing in interviews this week that if he were nonetheless education, he’d want to help protesting players get their message accessible in a great manner. And he says demonstrating for the duration of the anthem is not the first-class manner. This message of social trade isn’t always getting across to enthusiasts who disregard the protesting as anti-flag or anti-navy, or anti-united states. Now Dungy says, as you cited, he’d provide players time at some stage in his weekly teach’s press convention. All the media could be accrued. The gamers could speak about their concerns and possible answers to societal troubles.
And Dungy says they had had a far bigger platform this way than at stadiums where they may be kneeling or raising a fist at some stage in the anthem. ESPN introduced the day before this, for a 2d straight 12 months, it won’t broadcast the national anthem all through Monday Night Football video games. NBC failed to broadcast the anthem earlier than the first preseason game this season. So if networks are going to try this and put off a national platform for gamers, Dungy’s concept seems to make an even greater feel.
LUDDEN: Now, the participant that started all this, Colin Kaepernick, is nonetheless out of the NFL. Is that an ongoing problem for a few gamers?
GOLDMAN: Yeah. You know, I was informed this week, Jennifer, it’s a large problem. And it feels quite a few the anger players are feeling toward control. Kaepernick has filed a lawsuit saying proprietors are colluding in opposition to him, keeping him out of the league. Tony Dungy, who we spoke approximately, is certainly one of many who thinks it is a long shot that Kaepernick receives again to the NFL because Kaepernick is this kind of polarizing discern. So the proprietors will have to determine a manner to cope with player anger that may linger due to that.
LUDDEN: OK. Now for listeners who do care about football – approximately soccer the sport, we are…
GOLDMAN: Oh, yes.
LUDDEN: There is that. We’re starting to see some primary gamers take to the field as we get near the season right here – Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers, New England’s Tom Brady, who just grew to become the ripe old age of 41. How’s he looking?
GOLDMAN: (Laughter) Old guy…
LUDDEN: So young (laughter).
GOLDMAN: He’s searching quite sharp. He’s looking sharp. This week, he helped the Patriots beat the crew. New England was misplaced, too, inside the last Super Bowl, the Philadelphia Eagles. Brady finished 19 of his 26 passes he threw for 2 touchdowns. Sure. It’s the simplest week two of the preseason. But he looks as if he is equipped to go and defy age for every other season. Aaron Rodgers, who you referred to, getting back from an injury area last season – he threw a touchdown bypass in Green Bay’s win over Pittsburgh. So marquee NFL players gave their lovers a little something to feel good about.
LUDDEN: All proper. Switching to basketball, tell us about Minnesota Lynx’s Lindsay Whalen.
GOLDMAN: Yeah. The top-notch WNBA point shield announced this week she’s retiring after 15 seasons. She turned into first with Connecticut. And because of 2010, she has been with the Minnesota Lynx, where she helped the Lynx win 4 titles and absolutely helped turn them into the league’s maximum dominant team. She’s a first-rate tough defend, a terrific intuitive player.
And for all her accolades – five-time WNBA all-star or two-time Olympic gold medalist – one word, one place defines her exceptional. And that is Minnesota. She was born there, played and starred at the University of Minnesota, has become a key professional participant there. And, Jennifer, as soon as this WNBA season ends – and the day after today’s the last day of the ordinary season – Whalen takes over complete-time as head educates of – you guessed it – the University of Minnesota women’s basketball team.
LUDDEN: Happy for them. All proper, NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman, thanks.
GOLDMAN: You’re welcome.
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