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(Tibor Kolley)
(Tibor Kolley)

NBA players and cards: bad mix

At least they don't allow guns on the team plane Add to ...

So there are several things worth gleaning from the news that Memphis Grizzlies (Vancouver Grizzlies, RIP) teammates Tony Allen and O.J. Mayo got in a fight on the team plane Sunday night.

The first is that pro sports teams are shameless liars. This may be self evident, but it's worth remembering, oh, I don't know maybe every waking minute of every day. Mayo, you see, didn't play Monday night againt Oklahoma City because he had bronchitis, according to the team.

Turns out he was nursing a swollen face.

The second thing we learn is that in pro sports, teammates get sick of each other - just like people do at other jobs. This isn't news, but is also always worth remembering.

See, Mayo's face got swollen because Tony Allen punched him there after Mayo simply wouldn't shut up. This is one of those situations where the rest of us should maybe not rush to judgement as much as stop and congratulate ourselves because this doesn't happen as often as it could happen. As a species we're actually better than we give ourselves credit for, most of the time.

The third thing we learn is what Boo Ray is.

It's a card game, popular in NBA circles, apparently. It was Boo Ray that was at the heart of the dispute between Jarvis Crittendon and Gilbert Arenas that ended with the two of them bringing guns to the locker room (this account by Arenas in Esquire will get you up to speed).

The Arenas-Crittendon thing caused a pretty big stink, and as a result several teams banned gambling on team flights.

My bet is the Grizzlies will be the next team to introduce some kind of guideline to that effect.

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