Scotty Lago Makes Us Ponder, What’s Wrong With the Young Athletes of Today?

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Athletes used to have higher ethics in the past – scandals were rare, by no means comparable with those emerging from the rock’n’roll world of sex and drugs. Yes, we heard the names of the greats a few times, in highlights that didn’t exactly honor them, but somehow they managed to keep their careers intact. A better crisis management strategy I guess. The world still remembers Jim Palmer as Jim Palmer, and Bjorn Borg’s “transgressions” with a minor are all forgotten. Does anyone still remember what David Cone did in 1989? Or how Cristiano Ronaldo had fun in October 2005? What happened with Rick Pitino? Oscar de la Hoya still has a reputation, doesn’t he? Even my husband’s hero, Wilt Chamberlain, is no stranger to “transgressions” – it’s all in his autobiography A View From Above.

Somehow, despite the fuzz and the buzz, these athletes are still legends. This goes to teach us that, in the end, the value of an athlete is his/ her performance in sports, and not performances of other kind. No matter how much the media will tear them apart, no matter how many private details surface to the public, Wilt Chamberlain’s value in basketball remains unbeatable; and Tiger Woods is still one of the greatest golfers of all times.

Scotty Lago everything-pr

But there is something else these athletes seem to ignore. Such incidents were rare in the past, but lately, since Tiger Woods apparently set a dangerous trend, more and more names join the list of shame. And in the end, the people who should be pictures of health, ethics and moral values, the people our children grow to admire, and idolize, are the people who betray our trust the most.

So the winter Olympic games in Vancouver are still on, and the fever of winning an Olympic medal sometimes gets to one’s head. Like Scotty Lago who considered that his crotch deserved a higher honor than his neck. That’s where an Olympic medal should hang, unless I am mistaking. A joke, I presume, but in the middle of the joke, a girl kissed that medal, so strategically placed, and someone had the presence to shot a few spicy and racy pictures. Then the same girl bit the medal (probably trying to figure whether it was genuine bronze?) Now Scotty Lago makes hot headlines. His reputation is a bit shaded, his career in danger to end in shame if he doesn’t handle things right. The first step, admitting his mistake and having the courage to take the honorable decision to leave the games has been made. He apologized to officials at the U.S. Olympic Committee and the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association and decided to go home.

Scotty Lago didn’t hide, he didn’t lie… His decision is admirable, and smart: the steam from the media will pass in a few days.

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Comments

  1. film says

    M,
    Wilt and “Transgressions”??

    I wouldn’t try to compare apples to oranges..

    Wilt C. was never married, was always above the line and a straight shooter. He spoke his mind and dated every kind of available woman, no matter the race… He didn’t go for the married type, nor was he the father of young children!!!

    I’d say in the life and times of the day… he was by no means faulted for his sexual escapades – he was brash and often admired for amazing athletic achievements.

    If you’ve read that book… you’d know – he also said he’d cherish one, above the many… but such was his life as a single man. No fault in that.

    film.

    • Mihaela Lica says

      You are right, Film, that’s why I wrote transgressions in quotes. I find no fault in Wilt’s behavior, other than the fault find in numbers. But he was honest, and never pretended to be something he was not. All I was trying to say was that, despite his very active sex life, the world remembers him for the contribution in sports. Tiger on the other hand, does everything he can to be remembered for something else.

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