Shannon Sharpe Believes Players Who Are the ‘Face of the NBA’ Should Be Married

Shannon Sharpe
Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Sirius XM

So, this took a turn.

On the Tuesday edition of ESPN’s First Take, Stephen A. Smith, former NBA player J.J. Redick, and former NFL great Shannon Sharpe were discussing what it takes to be the “Face of the NBA” and what kind of criteria should go into making that decision.

Then Sharpe unleashed a take that caught his fellow analysts completely off-guard.

“What about relationship status? Magic and Bird were married. LeBron was in a relationship with Savannah. Because when we look at Presidential candidates, we want them to be secure, we want them to be foundational pieces,” Sharpe said.

So, it seems like this comes down to ideal situations. Ideally, you would like any face of the NBA or any sports league or organization to have the stability and support of a marriage.

There’s nothing wrong with Sharpe wanting that to be the case.

But what makes a player the “Face of the NBA?” You have to be a great player. In the current merchandising and endorsement environment, it wouldn’t hurt if you could move some search as well, but primarily, you have to be great.

Can you be great without being married?

Yes, and this is where the argument falls apart. Because if the greatest player in the league were single, you wouldn’t anoint the second greatest player face of the league status just because he’s married.

So, what Sharpe is arguing for here isn’t insane or stupid, as some have tried to say. He’s just speaking from a “perfect world” standpoint.


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