Thoughts on the Raja Bell Situation
I’ve been meaning to write a post about Bell v. Corbin for some time, but I never got my thoughts together. @YuccaManHoops sent out the following tweets yesterday. These tweets pretty much spell out and sum up my own thoughts on this matter (read from the bottom).
Just to add on to what Yucca Man said:
1) I personally agree with Yucca Man that Raja’s confrontation with Ty wasn’t over his own playing time or role, but rather issues concerning the team. I actually wrote about that back in March.
2) Raja’s personality was part of why the Jazz signed him the second time around. They didn’t sign him to be a quiet Yes Man. Yet when he voiced issues or perhaps simply questioned whether things could be done in a different way, he was dead to Ty. Afterwards, he met with Ty and KOC and everyone came out of the meeting saying they were going to move forward and put the past behind them. However, that didn’t happen. Raja was treated like a disobedient child: “Go to your room” + silent treatment. For a player to not even know if they’re active on game day, and to have to find out from the media, damn straight it was personal. And unprofessional.
3) Absolutely agree with Yucca Man about how the kids noticed. You can’t tell me that they saw how Ty was dealing with Raja, and that it didn’t affect them and how they approached their jobs and relationship with their coach.
4) Raja wasn’t the only one that had issues with Ty’s communication skills. I know that certain members of the media were going around during locker room cleanout asking players about this issue after Raja gave his interview, but CJ and Devin weren’t venting or even critical in their comments. They were simply stating their opinions based on their own experiences with Ty. Coincidentally (I’m not connecting any dots here), Raja’s been bought out, Devin’s been traded, and CJ is in all likelihood gone.
5) Matt Harpring on May 18 on KFAN (it was still KFAN then, right?):
Venting to the media is never a good thing and Raja should know that. If you have a problem, you do it inside the doors with the people that need to be informed of your problem. You let it out to the media, it makes yourself look bad. And there’s 29 other teams that read the newspapers. The Internet’s a very big thing. They read those statements, and it could be the Atlanta Hawks owner could be reading that right now and being like, “Wow, I don’t want Raja Bell on my team. He’s a cancer.” So I think situations like that when you throw coaches under the bus or you throw players under the bus, you end up just hurting yourself.
So let’s say that what Harpring says is true (although Raja has already been linked to several teams). The flip side of that is, players/free agents could look at how things unfolded in Utah, which is regarded as a not-hot free agent destination to begin with, and be even less inclined to consider the Jazz. Raja has been around the league; he’s played a long time with a lot of players and was a player rep at union talks during the lockout. His experience with Ty and how Ty acted are more likely to influence how other players perceive the Jazz during free agency than the organization’s speeches about stability, great place to raise a family, etc.