The Athletic Reporter
September 12, 2005 Sports News the Way You Want It. Completely Made Up. Issue 127
Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton Protest NBA MVP Voting
Originally posted 5/9/2005

Jackson (left) and Sharpton confer before Sunday's protest
MIAMI - The reverends Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson mounted a massive rally in downtown Miami, Florida Sunday to protest the selection of Phoenix Suns guard Steve Nash as the NBA's 2004-2005 Most Valuable Player. "This MVP award is unconscionable, inconceivable and unbelievable," said Sharpton. "Another case of the black man -- in this case, Shaquille O'Neal -- being kept down. Do you realize that white men have now won four out of the last 22 MVP awards? When will it end?"

Jackson added that while Nash was a key factor in Phoenix's remarkable turnaround from also-rans last year to the NBA's best record this year, Shaquille O'Neal of the Miami Heat, whose team tied with the San Antonio Spurs for the second-best record in the league, clearly deserved the award. "Shaquille O'Neal has suffered one indignity after the other from white America," Jackson said, "from being forced to star in such ridiculous movies as Kazaam and Steel to being abused and mistreated by the likes of Brad Miller and Greg Ostertag for years. Losing the MVP award to Steve Nash, who is so white that he's Canadian, is the ultimate indignity."

"Clearly, there is a glass ceiling in the NBA," said Sharpton, "as there is in all too many walks of live for today's African American. Such a thing is blatantly obvious when someone like Steve Nash is recognized as MVP while teammates Shawn Marion and Amare Stoudemire, both of whom possess mad skills, are overlooked. Not to mention Shaq, of course. His value is clear not just because of how he elevated Miami, but because of how bad Los Angeles became in his absence. I ask the nation's sports media: did the Dallas Mavericks miss Steve Nash?"

"Uh, I'm really sorry about all this," Nash said at a Sunday press conference. "I didn't mean to win MVP. Really, I didn't. I mean, you look at the list of NBA MVPs, and, the three worst players on there are probably Bob McAdoo, Dave Cowens and Allen Iverson, and two of those guys are Hall of Famers and the other one is going to be. Now, there's me. I realize as much as anybody how bad this sort of screws up the whole thing, believe me."

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