Tag Archives: Brawn drain

Trump breaks Cuba-US baseball agreement

It is not news that the Trump administration has canceled the agreement signed by the MLB and the Cuban Baseball Federation, on December 19, after three years of hard work by both parties.

And it is not because the agreement sought to end the human suffering of Cuban athletes. Continue reading

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Filed under Baseball, Cuba, Uncategorized

We The ESPN, We The Scotiabank, We The North

By TONY SEED

Soccer CorporatizationThe start time of Friday night’s match between the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors held in Toronto was moved back to 8.00 p.m. at the dictate of the US ESPN sports cable TV network. [1] No one complained: Toronto made the big time in the US market. Toronto even won this game of the leading contenders in the NBA East and is 2-0 to start the season. “[Kawhi] Leonard, the team’s superstar newcomer,” reports the Globe and Mail, “was serenaded on a couple of occasions with chants of ’MVP, MVP’ by an adoring hometown crowd.”

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Here’s Johnny

A radio-controlled flying witch flies past a moon setting into clouds along the pacific ocean in Carlsbad, California

REUTERS/Mike Blake*

By TONY SEED

What about the neo-colonial mentality and behaviour of the monopoly sports media? Every foreign star who touches down in Canada is celebrated as some singular being, and Canadians are supposed to be blessed and thankful for the favour of paying to watch them perform.

Throughout the past week, the sports media has been hyping non-stop the first start of American football quarterback Johnny Manziel in the Canadian Football League. A former NFL first round draft pick, his two seasons with the Cleveland Browns were marred by off-field troubles including spousal abuse. He has not played since the end of the 2015 season. Continue reading

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Filed under Athletes, Soccer / Football

Talent theft: Effects of US blockade of Cuba evident in field of sport

By ENVER VILLAMIZAR

Focus-on-Cuban-Sport.HeaderOn July 15, 2015 the coach of Cuba’s rowing team to the Pan American Games, Juan Carlos Reyes, confirmed that four of Cuba’s rowers had left Canada for the United States. The Globe and Mail and other media outlets pounced on the story, reporting on it in a manner that sheds no light on the issue at the heart of this story. The impression is conveyed that those who abandon their team are “defectors,” a term reserved for those who flee oppression and persecution. This feeds a narrative which claims they are fleeing to freedom. Media reports speculated on the motivation of the rowers, using quotes from professional U.S. “recruiter” Joe Kehoskie, to cobble together a story that imposes the predetermined conclusions of a Cold War mindset. Continue reading

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Olympics: State-organized talent theft and mercantilism

Qatar's Marko Bagaric, left, tries to score past France's Ludovic Fabregas during the men's preliminary handball match between France and Qatar at the 2016 Summer Olympics on Tuesday in Rio de Janeiro | Ben Curtis/AP

Qatar’s Marko Bagaric from Bulgaria, left, tries to score past France’s Ludovic Fabregas during the men’s preliminary handball match between France and Qatar at the 2016 Summer Olympics on Tuesday in Rio de Janeiro | Ben Curtis/AP

By TONY SEED 
August 10, updated August 19, 2016

Of the some 11,000 athletes competing in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, an unknown number are competing for medal-hungry countries that are not their birth nation. At least 23 of Qatar’s 39 member team at Rio were born outside of Qatar and transplanted – recruited in many cases with the offer of financial inducements. The Canadian Olympic team also features a number of plastic or transfer athletes recruited through the “Own The Podium” program of private big capital for support and funding on the basis that they are “winners” and “America’s best who happen to have some kind of Canadian connection.” Such developments, all in the name of high ideals, should be of concern to Canadians.

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Filed under Olympics - Sochi, Olympics – Rio de Janeiro, Uncategorized

Why do we not play in the major leagues?

By Roberto Ramírez

(July 7, 2015) – As often happens at other events, the presence of the Cuban national baseball team in the XVII Pan Am Games leads fans and colleagues who are unaware of our reality to ask why its stars do not play in U.S. Major League Baseball (MLB).

And the question holds a certain logic since everyone sees the majors as the mecca of the sport, and the very media that promote the signing of multi-million dollar contracts as the realization of the so-called American dream do not talk about the reality that makes things so incredibly different for Cuba. Continue reading

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Illegal trafficking of Cuban baseball players

U.S.-based Cuban journalist Edmundo Garcia in March 2012 wrote about the problem of Cuban baseball players being caught up with unscrupulous human traffickers in the Dominican Republic, with their ultimate destination the U.S. major leagues. Garcia cited a front page story on March 10, 2012 in the Dominican newspaper Listín Diario entitled “Edgar Mercedes arrested for trafficking Cuban baseball players.” Continue reading

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