"The Stack" 7-26-16

Michael Jordan (the tall dude in the middle) spoke out yesterday in The Undefeated regarding the recent string of cop shootings against African Americans. Peter Llewellyn-USA TODAY Sports
Michael Jordan (the tall dude in the middle) spoke out yesterday in The Undefeated regarding the recent string of cop shootings against African Americans.
Peter Llewellyn-USA TODAY Sports
The New York Yankees have traded closer Aroldis Chapman to the Chicago Cubs for four minor leaguers. The trade boosts the Cubs' beleaguered bullpen and makes them the team to beat in the NL.
Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

The Stack is back on this Tuesday as there were a couple of stories I missed from the weekend plus a couple of stories from Monday that caught our attention that we need to discuss so let’s get right to it and see what’s in “the stack” for today, Tuesday, July 26th:


Michael Jordan stays silent no longer


Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan wrote a column for The Undefeated about the recent tension and shootings of police officers and African Americans.  He has pledged one million dollars Institute for Community-Police Relations and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.  Jordan is receiving criticism for this decision and I get where that is coming from.  Why is he saying something now?  Where was he during his playing career or when other issues presented themselves an opportunity for Jordan to take the platform and speak?  Others are criticizing Jordan for saying something at all.  You knew that was coming and that is sad.  Jordan can say whatever he wants and the fact that he is donating one million dollars to both of these organizations shows he wants resolution and the two sides to come together.  I encourage you to read his full column here and I applaud Jordan for speaking on this, but do hope that he continues to do this on situations that may need a voice like his.


Josh Gordon reinstated


The NFL has reinstated wide receiver Josh Gordon back to the league, but has suspended him four games under their substance abuse policy because of Gordon’s continual marijuana use.  He will be allowed to be around the team though and practice with them which is different than Tom Brady will do as Brady’s suspension falls under the personal conduct policy.  The personal conduct policy and PED policy stipulate you have to stay away from your team at all time, but the substance abuse policy provides a little leeway and the NFL in this case has decided that Gordon can be around his team, the Cleveland Browns. 


That is the right decision.  Gordon needs positive influences around.  He can no longer be hanging around Johnny Manziel.  When Gordon is on the field he is one of the best wide receivers in the game.  He put up amazing numbers early in his career.  Unfortunately he has been very unreliable in staying on the field.  This is for all intents and purposes his last chance and the Browns it seems like now have the support in place to make this a more stable environment for Gordon since they have Hue Jackson has head coach.  This is Gordon’s last chance and he is certainly a weapon for the Browns, one they didn’t anticipate having.  Something positive happening now in Cleveland and hopefully it won’t be another positive marijuana test for Gordon.


Yankees trade Chapman to Cubs


The winningest team in baseball history has traded their dominant close to the team with the longest World Series drought making them perhaps the team to beat for this year’s World Series.  The New York Yankees traded Aroldis Chapman to the Chicago Cubs for four minor leaguers with the main prize being shortstop Gleyber Torres who is currently playing single A ball and tearing it up.  Chapman is a dynamic closer and will instantly boost the Cubs’ bullpen.  Anyone watching the Cubs the past couple of months knows how underwhelming they have been since their fast start to the season.  The main issue with the team has been with their bullpen.  Chapman was suspended for 30 games earlier this season regarding a domestic abuse incident and the Cubs made sure to acknowledge that in their announcement of the trade, but when you have the chance to land a guy like Chapman and end the longest World Series drought in baseball history, you have to take a chance on that.  This is a good move by the Cubs and hopefully this sets up an epic showdown between the Cubs and the Giants in the NLCS.


Chris Sale cuts up jersey


Forgot to mention this story Monday, but over the weekend the Chicago White Sox were scheduled to wear some throwback 1976 jerseys when ace Chris Sale took the mound Saturday night.  Sale did not like the jerseys and said that the front office was worried more about making money than they are of winning.  Putting aside the fact that part of Sale and other players’ salaries come from marketing and merchandise sales, Sale cut up his jersey and had a huge clubhouse tirade.  He was scratched from his start and the team has subsequently suspended him five games which is the equivalent to one start.  Sale’s name has been mentioned as possibly getting traded though that might not happen until next year.  He is such a dynamic pitcher for the White Sox.  It would be a shame to see them trade him unless they get a major haul for him.  Given this latest incident though and some of things he said during the whole Adam LaRoche situation in spring training, perhaps the team will seek to trade him and get max value for him.


IOC does not hand down full ban to Russia


The IOC has decided not to do a blanket ban on Russia for the Summer Olympics meaning all qualified athletes other than track and field who was already suspended will be allowed to participate at the games in Rio here in a couple of weeks.  This seems to be a systemic issue in Russia and one has to imagine this stems to Winter Olympic athletes as well.  But now we find out that seven swimmers have been declared ineligible by FINA and 5 canoeists have been banned.  How many other athletes does Russia have left to send?  Based on this, it would seem like a full ban of all Russian Federation athletes would make sense until the system is cleaned up over there.  This once again just shows how fixed the IOC appears to be.  I love the Olympics, but these games in Rio have such a huge cloud hanging over them and I fear for the athletes, broadcasters and spectators safety.  Let’s hope everything goes smoothly and that the IOC starts making better decisions too.


Coming up later this week: Reaction to top stories in sports world