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mr.nascar13

ATL Hawks to be sold due to offensive email

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This is clearly Levenson looking for a legitimate out to make sure that a sale of the team occurs. He saw the Clippers going for $2B and other teams going for record sales and figured that he had to get in on that action. I don't think that the guy is racist, but I do think that he's trying to strike while the "Hey this guy is racist so we should take his/their team away from him/them" iron is hot.

But Brave-Bird's right. I don't think any Hawks fan is going to be shedding tears about Atlanta Spirit Group moving on.

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Saying, "I don't want this group of people with a certain skin color to patronize my business despite the fact that they possess the means to patronize my business" trips all sorts of alarm bells. Remember that "segregation" thing?

I don't think he ever said he didn't want black people; he wanted white people, too. If you can increase demand, then you can raise prices and keep the same attendance.

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Saying, "I don't want this group of people with a certain skin color to patronize my business despite the fact that they possess the means to patronize my business" trips all sorts of alarm bells. Remember that "segregation" thing?

I don't think he ever said he didn't want black people; he wanted white people, too. If you can increase demand, then you can raise prices and keep the same attendance.

The email paints a picture of a zero-sum Hawks attendance status.

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Saying, "I don't want this group of people with a certain skin color to patronize my business despite the fact that they possess the means to patronize my business" trips all sorts of alarm bells. Remember that "segregation" thing?

I don't think he ever said he didn't want black people; he wanted white people, too. If you can increase demand, then you can raise prices and keep the same attendance.

The email paints a picture of a zero-sum Hawks attendance status.

Honestly don't see it.

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Saying, "I don't want this group of people with a certain skin color to patronize my business despite the fact that they possess the means to patronize my business" trips all sorts of alarm bells. Remember that "segregation" thing?

I don't think he ever said he didn't want black people; he wanted white people, too. If you can increase demand, then you can raise prices and keep the same attendance.

The email paints a picture of a zero-sum Hawks attendance status.

Honestly don't see it.

My theory is that the black crowd scared away the whites

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My theory is that the black crowd scared away the whites

Yep. And he appears to want to chase away his existing patrons to capture a new (and presumably more lucrative?) one.

Pretty shameful.

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I actually think he wants to cash out his team. Sure, he will not get $2B like the Clippers, but $600 - $700M sounds good. And if it means a move to Seattle, it sounds even better.

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Levenson doesn't own all of the Hawks so I'm not really worried about them moving. Also means he's not getting 2 Bil for his partial share.

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Saying, "I don't want this group of people with a certain skin color to patronize my business despite the fact that they possess the means to patronize my business" trips all sorts of alarm bells. Remember that "segregation" thing?

I don't think he ever said he didn't want black people; he wanted white people, too. If you can increase demand, then you can raise prices and keep the same attendance.

The email paints a picture of a zero-sum Hawks attendance status.

Honestly don't see it.

My theory is that the black crowd scared away the whites

... immediately followed by

Please dont get me wrong. There was nothing threatening going on in the arean back then. i never felt uncomfortable, but i think southern whites simply were not comfortable being in an arena or at a bar where they were in the minority. On fan sites i would read comments about how dangerous it is around philips yet in our 9 years, i don't know of a mugging or even a pick pocket incident. This was just racist garbage.

I see it as throwing tchotchkes like "40 year-old white guy" music and white cheerleaders to the white crowd, not driving black people away. If I have a senior citizen discount on Tuesday nights, am I driving other customers away on those nights? To call it racist implies that it's a color thing... I think it's probably just a money thing. Discarding poorer patrons for more affluent ones is what every team does any time they raise prices... it doesn't really raise a stink. The Hawks were looking to raise revenue and noticed that they're missing a demographic that is the core for season ticket bases around the league. There's a difference between talking about race and being racist.

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There's a difference between talking about race and being racist.

That is a very fine line. And he arguably tripped right over it.

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I'd argue that he didn't. At worst he was insensitive, but this isn't in Sterling's neighborhood. Like I already said, he was most upset with the dog-whistling about Philips Arena being in a "bad neighborhood." Deadspin just has everyone keeping their witch-hunting hats on every day now.

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Reports are that Clay Bennett is calling a press conference today to say that black people can't swim. Most curiously, this is all the press conference will consist of, other than perhaps some finger-rubbing gestures and exaggerated coughing.

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This is one of the strangest stories I have ever seen. Sterling is a senile nitwit that was caught on camera saying something incredibly stupid. This guy was far more thoughtful and what he said was like 75% lamenting racism and 25% racist (or, at least, stereotyping). He's not a senile old fool but he wrote a less-than-sensitive email and then told the world about it. Most people that get to the point he's at don't let that happen. (Until they become senile like Sterling).

Pretty much anyone in his position would be asking "how do we get that middle-aged white demographic to the games" if they are in fact that short of the rest of the league--particularly if their overall ticket revenue is lagging. They devote more effort to talking about it in meetings and less to archiving it via email communication though. The email is pretty anecdotal...not much data to back up much of anything. For example, T-Wolves games are at least 90% white and I don't recall too much rock-and-roll or country music being played there. And the racial proportions he gives for Wizards and Hawks games are off the top of his head...probably exaggerated both ways.

In any case, I don't think this was all that motivated by racism as with Sterling. I am falling into the camp of him hoping to get a big fat check like Sterling did.

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My theory is that the black crowd scared away the whites

Yep. And he appears to want to chase away his existing patrons to capture a new (and presumably more lucrative?) one.

Pretty shameful.

Sounds like gentrification. I think it's a pretty bad email he sent out, but I also think he's trying to cash in. It's odd for an owner to be the whistle-blower on himself. Clearly there's another angle of why he's making it public now and not the day after he emailed his staff.

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My theory is that the black crowd scared away the whites

Yep. And he appears to want to chase away his existing patrons to capture a new (and presumably more lucrative?) one.

Pretty shameful.

Sounds like gentrification. I think it's a pretty bad email he sent out, but I also think he's trying to cash in. It's odd for an owner to be the whistle-blower on himself. Clearly there's another angle of why he's making it public now and not the day after he emailed his staff.
Well apparently there was an investigation going on about racism within the organization so that could be a reason as to why to brought it out himself to try and control the back lash or something

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I'd argue that he didn't. At worst he was insensitive, but this isn't in Sterling's neighborhood.

Oh, I don't think that it is. Nowhere near. And as I said, there's room for argument as to whether or not this crossed the line. But I think we can all agree that it's at least close, no?

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I'd argue that he didn't. At worst he was insensitive, but this isn't in Sterling's neighborhood.

Oh, I don't think that it is. Nowhere near. And as I said, there's room for argument as to whether or not this crossed the line. But I think we can all agree that it's at least close, no?

Only to a degree. The actions of both of him and his wife regarding their real estate properties which were submitted to the courts are what crossed the "line", however Sterling was stating his views on a call that he had a reasonable expectation of privacy.

Email is not as well protected in terms of speech.

Bruce's email was direction to change the Hawks attendance based on a racial profile- slightly more egregious to me, then the team scouting report had that word. .

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I'm not surprised at the sentiments, but am surprised he wrote those things in email. Seems really stupid to make a record of any race-based content, especially when he himself acknowledges it as controversial.

I think the topic could have been more artfully discussed, but am not surprises the demographics conversation is happening. I'd be interested to know if there were similar conversations happening with the Grizzlies or Pelicans; my guess is there are, but that's bases on a hunch and nothing more.

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Yeah, that the scouting report in question concerned Luol Deng really surprised me. No one has ever said a bad thing about Luol Deng!

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