ESPN not forcing Jemele Hill to apologize was the only choice for the network.

By Jimmy Traina
September 14, 2017

1. If you can handle one more day of Jemele Hill stuff, bear with me. If not, just skip to item No. 2.

Since so much stuff happened yesterday, here's a quick recap and some thoughts. One of the things I keep complaining about in Traina Thoughts is that we live in a time where people don't care about facts. And that problem is not limited to one side. The White House did NOT demand that ESPN fire Jemele Hill. The White House said Hill's comments were a fireable offense. Big difference. And the White House did not mention Hill without provocation. A reporter brought up Hill and asked Press Secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, about the now infamous tweets. So, even if you hate Trump, think about the fact that a reporter wasted time in a press briefing to even ask about Hill. I mean, why bother with health care, climate change, the economy, etc, when you can try to get to the bottom of a truly hard-hitting issue: the tweets from a sports TV host.

As for Hill's statement late Wednesday night and ESPN's follow up, I have to give the World Wide Leader credit. I knocked them yesterday for handling the situation poorly and pissing off both sides. What they did last night was basically say, "We realize the anti-ESPN crowd will not let up on bashing us even if we apologize, suspend or fire Hill, so let's not bother with the forced, fake apology, which will upset the people who support Hill." It seems as if ESPN finally came to the realization that you're never going to appease those who think you have a liberal agenda. If they fired or suspended Hill, that crowd will just recharge their batteries and look for the next battle to fight. ESPN has already lost those who were outraged by Hill's tweets. Handing down a disciplinary action would only make the other side livid. So, ESPN pulled a Mariano Rivera and came away with a truly impressive save.

2. The newest episode of Off The Board is a great conversation with Evan Longoria. The Rays third baseman came to the SI office earlier this week and talked about a variety of baseball topics, including the controversy about whether the home run record is 61 or 73, the ridiculousness of some of the game's unwritten rules, why replay is a big problem and much more. Longoria also discussed being a foodie (he would like to you stop putting Sriracha on sushi), Game of Thrones, The Sopranos, his wife's aggressive tweets and more. You can listen to the podcast below or download it on iTunes, SoundCloud and Stitcher

3. The stats during the Indians' historic 21-game winning streak continue to boggle the mind.

Even LeBron James is impressed with the Indians these days, but it seems a little rude he'd ask them to win 40 in a row. Greedy much?

4. Oh, those wacky college football die-hard fans, always worrying about their team.

5. The Minnesota Vikings have hired an 18-year-old to help its players relate better to Generation Z.

6. Craig Carton, who was arrested by the FBI last week for his alleged role in a Ponzi scheme, resigned from WFAN last night, which is amusing, considering he had no chance to return, but I digress. Anyway, Carton's now ex-partner, Boomer Esiason, talked about the resignation and the future of the show this morning.

7. It's amazing to see what baseball players -- in this case, Red Sox outfielder Brock Holt -- will do to kill time during a game.

8. RANDOM WRESTLING VIDEO OF THE DAY: I had a request for more old-school, '80s Hulk Hogan. Here's the time Andre the Giant turned on Hogan during a Piper's Pit segment. My goodness, Hogan's acting was so awful here.

Get the link to a new Traina's Thoughts each day by following on Twitter and liking on Facebook. Catch up on previous editions of Traina Thoughts here. And check Jimmy Traina's weekly podcast, "Off The Board," on iTunesSoundCloud and Stitcher.

BONUS ITEM: If I had to give out a pick on tonight's Texans-Bengals game, it would be under 38, but the confidence level is low on that one.


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