A Place Fit for Standing
You don't even recognize my face. That's fine. Some stuff I wrote you might like:
-GM Swagger Power Rankings, with Ziller
-Unpacking "Change of Scenery"
-This Evans/Martin Break-Up Was Good for Martin, Really
A brief word about the last one: An earlier draft contained a reference to Martin's light skin, which I cited as another reason some people might be under the impression that he wasn't an aggressive player. But as Q McCall pointed out in a chat, in a context like AOL, it's hard to broach the concept of skin tone stereotypes without either:
1) Appearing to condone them
2) Having to exhaustively lay out the phenomenon
3) Giving a reader the opportunity to say "I don't think that way", thus weakening the argument
4) Meet with steep resistance to the very idea that such prejudice exists.
I finally decided that this point, and the meta-media question surrounding it, belonged here on FD—where, I think it's safe to assume, most of us have at least heard of this form of prejudice. But it was strange to realize how hard it was to write that sentence about Martin in a way that the general audience on FD would have found accessible, and would have had the desired effect.
Speaking of Martin and skin tone, I think we've seen something similar happen with Stephen Curry. Now that Curry's gotten comfortable, we're seeing what his game will look like at an NBA level, and it's pretty nasty. He penetrates, shakes defenders, crosses over at random, and doesn't fear disaster. In some ways, he's not that different than Monta. But since members of the media never watch the Warriors, they talk about him as a pure shooter with stellar basketball IQ and a airtight sense of right and wrong on the court. The Kevin Martin-syndrome, as much as anything else, explains the disconnect between the discourse surrounding Curry and the player you see on the floor.