JJ Redick will be so greater than one other empty hot-take machine


JJ Redick should resist the attract of the take-industrial advanced.
Photograph: Getty Photos

I by no means thought I’d say, “ what, possibly J.J. Redick doesn’t suck,” however he’s surprisingly insightful in his post-playing profession gig at ESPN. The previous Blue Satan understands how the present iteration of the sport is performed in addition to any analyst for the community and takes a refreshing method to evaluating eras when juxtaposed subsequent to the previous heads. He additionally isn’t afraid to repeatedly insult Boston Celtics legends, which is excessive comedy.

JJ Purpleicok couldn’t be extra improper about Larry Fowl

Redick is polished on any medium, whether or not it’s on First Take, within the sales space, or behind a podcast microphone, and he does all three. He’s so good in reality that I don’t need to see him go full take artist. You by no means go full take artist, as a result of then it turns into extra about being loud than being logical.

I do know it’s troublesome for athletes and even sports activities media to not be aggressive. Determining who received, even when it’s not a race, is ingrained in people who find themselves (or cowl) winners or losers all through their careers. And you’ll see it. Considered one of Redick’s greatest qualities as a basketball participant was his drive. The man performed within the NBA for 15 years, was rather a lot higher than his detractors had hoped, and seems to be equally motivated as a speaking head.

Redick utilizing his powers for idiocy

I believe what goes on throughout a taping of First Take is a few of the dumbest content material possible, and Redick is doing himself a disservice by partaking in it in any respect. He’s been a polarizing determine since faculty, and whether or not he’s aspiring to lean into it, or making an attempt to be the voice of analytics, viewers will really feel a manner after a couple of back-and-forths with Stephen A. Smith.

It’s akin to one in every of your favourite musical acts collaborating with McDonald’s or Maroon 5. I don’t understand how I really feel about Cardi B getting this large. I perceive the cash and notoriety are good, nevertheless it’s beginning to muddle the main target.

Is Redick the considerate former participant that gave Ben Simmons the protected house to offer his (albeit delusional) facet of how issues went in Philly, or is he a shrewd media character that knew Simmons could be an enormous draw and agreed to ask solely softball questions? The reply is probably going a little bit of each. Be that as it could, it’s truthful to surprise how a lot of the motivation is journalistic, and the way a lot is capitalistic.

Redick dangers his integrity the extra he’s with silly

There’s a grey space that Redick may occupy as a sane analyst who hops on First Take often to disparage Bob Cousy, however largely is a presence on the facet of sports activities media that doesn’t equate octaves to scores. Plenty of his arguments are fact-based, and analytics followers are at all times looking for validation. Having a former participant/present media member on their facet additionally may function a bridge to the longtime retirees who nonetheless assume numbers nerds dwell of their mother’s basement.

This present Icarus act jeopardizes that and can finally engulf him in flames — and dapping up Mad Canine after an anti-North Carolina rant is strictly the form of spark that may ignite it.

I’d by no means rip Redick for shitting on UNC. He went to Duke. That is the way it works. My challenge was being an adjunct to Chris Russo’s efficiency artwork, which is exactly what ESPN is on the lookout for. Decide a facet and defend LeBron James like he’s household. If a powerful phrase from the rant can ALL-CAPS’D for the promotional tweet, even higher.

There are precise progressive conversations about sports activities available, and J.J. is nice at these. The morning block of ESPN will not be that.

Redick might view his burgeoning success as a sign of his expertise, nevertheless it’s trying increasingly more like what he’s doing with these abilities is losing them.


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