A reader writes:
I admire your blog and, as a distinctly separate matter, some evident personal traits. You are willing to research, document and state clearly, the conclusions you draw from those findings. That, though important, is secondary to your tenacity. I have read every post on the Prosser-Bradley Affair known as the "Choke-Hold Incident" and until recently, every comment made to each. It is evident by the content of your posts that you have intentionally avoided a "post simply to post" redundancy, keeping it fresh by adding newly found material and incorporating new conclusions in their proper place, to include a summary and time-line when it became appropriate.
Still, even with such praise, I write with some objections because I believe that this issue is of major importance, not just for the city or your state but nationally, and this will only become obvious in time, when looking back on it. The principle reason that I have become reluctant to read every comment is not because of the sheer number of contributions, but their repetition and the rather narrow framework within which the issue has fallen, in the matter as it is addressed.
Perhaps I should tell you why I do not like or follow sports.
There were many new rules being crafted, and I won't detail them but will use basketball as an example. In one particular, very close championship game, I lost a bet with a friend. I lost because my friend was a coaching expert and had been called in to counsel a player on "How to get an opposing player to foul him." I later learned that this was a known "tactic," acknowledged and named as an "intentional foul" which was itself a violation having a penalty if caught doing it. It is, in and of itself, a foul because an intentional foul is recognized as an intent to break the rules (laws) that are the fabric of agreement for the game in an acknowledged attempt to gain illegal advantage and unearned gain.
What Bradley did, suddenly standing, the rushed approach, the confusing gestures, the close body proximity and even the unusual and unexpected language all read, almost word for word as those instructions for creating an intentional foul. Abruptly standing draws attention, the quick approach focuses that attention, the gestures are specifically intended to create the idea that one thing is going to happen while it will not, and the emphasized "BUDDY..!" cements the idea, the emotional response and, at its best, the target becomes both defensive and irate.
It is important to note that, while I learned this many years ago, like the steps of known "Con Jobs" each of these have now expanded in use and are so well known that they have individual names. From "The Fake" to "The Distraction" to "Trash Talking" each has predictable and reliable results. The gestures, in particular, practiced and done correctly, will produce the desired and unavoidable reaction; in fact even being told that a person will approach and "throw a punch" at your face I doubt that you could prevent a defensive reaction of some kind. Try it with a harmless ball of foam thrown at your face to verify.
I am not normally a conspiracy theorist but I propose that this is more, much more, than a spontaneous incident. This was not only planned but all indications are that it required coaching and possibly (repeated) rehearsal. Many of the remaining portions indicate the same, in support and intent, from the threat to "take it public" to the outraged emphasis on details of what and who was told and the perfect timing of each.
You have the correct handle on this: the origin of the leak to the newspaper columnist. You might suggest that all known parties volunteer to publicly waive any claims and support the disclosure by that columnist. No, I do not think that a biased columnist would do that, even under those circumstances, but as there are a limited number of first-hand possibilities that might force at least a "reassurance contact" from the responsible party. It would also leave the columnist at a loss for adequate, possibly awkward, explanation.
Good work, and keep at it. The matter of exposing those, in sports or in politics, willing to cheat the game for gain is important.
This issue applies to other sports as well, simply look at the newest rule changes, often being those to correct similar previous incidents. A switch to chess as player or observer, makes cheating much less a concern.