Thursday, July 30, 2009

Is Mason's retirement about something more than money and McNair's tragic passing?


It was reported a couple of days ago that Derrick Mason had hired a moving company to transport his family back to Nashville. In knee-jerk fashion, many fans and some in the media quickly concluded that this news suggests that Mason’s “retirement” is for real.

Don’t count me among them.

I have maintained that given the way Mason’s retirement announcement was delivered – through his agent’s website, that the sequence of behaviors amount to nothing more than posturing. This is all about creating leverage.

After all why would an agent be so quick to announce a client’s retirement less than 30 minutes after a workout in the Ravens’ facility? Oh, Derrick could only bench press 225 pounds 12 times instead of 15 – time to retire!

By nature agents are paid to promote careers and expand income producing opportunities for their clients. If anything an agent driven by the innate larceny in his/her heart, would try and talk a client out of retirement because they make zip, zero, nada on said client upon retirement. There isn’t an agent on the planet that just can’t wait to announce a client’s retirement.

Agents aren’t built that way.

It’s a negotiating ploy to create leverage…plain and simple.

Or so I thought…

Then we hear the news about the moving company.

It occurred to me that what if Mason hired the moving company to move just his family to Nashville and he would remain behind in Baltimore. And if true what might that mean?

Let’s step back for a moment…

Mason and his wife have been married for 12 years and they have two children – a ten year old daughter and a six year old son. Mason’s public persona is that of a family man. Now given the tender ages of those children – children Mason outwardly adores; given Mason’s conditioning and rehab regimen for his shoulder; given his work in the community; his participation in voluntary organized team activities; the offseason strength and conditioning program, etc, etc…

The sudden decision to retire and haul in the moving vans suggests that something could have happened – something sudden in Mason’s life that triggered the “retirement” other than money.

Why would Mason with little planning uproot his children a few weeks before school begins again?

Did Steve McNair’s tragic death trigger all of this?

Has grief paralyzed Mason’s ambition?

Try to put yourself in Mason’s shoes and imagine that you lost a dear friend in a tragic way. Do you think your friend would want you to stop doing something that you love – to stop providing for your family the best way that you can?

Of course not!

If anything, McNair’s death could fuel Mason’s determination following a temporary setback to grieve. Athletes compete and athletes like Mason are often driven by inspiration. He played through intense pain last year driven by his desire to set an example for his son. You don’t think that he’d like to dedicate a season to his fallen friend?

I still believe that negotiating leverage is playing a role in Mason’s behavior, but I now believe it isn’t that simple. Something happened other than grief following McNair’s death and whatever it is, here’s hoping that with time it heals for the benefit of Derrick Mason and his family.

4 comments :

Capitalism Junkie said...

Maybe Mason had a girlfriend of his own and McNairs situation was a wakeup call which prompted him to cut all ties and get the heck out of dodge.

Harryos29 said...

Harry o 29 July 31st
Trivia ..Today Johnathan Ogden turns 35 years old.. Happy Birthday Johnathan;
I am an objective person. But, unless MASONS' mom is sick..this could be a possibility. When you make Millions like he has over the years...I guarantee you its NOT a MONEY PROBLEM....
...so, lets give MASON the benefit of the DOUBT, and as Tony says..Cheer him on when he runs onto the Field on Sept 13th....

Harryos29 said...

Harry O 29 August 7th
...Now that it appears that MASON is back in the fold; the Ravens still do not have a true NUMBER ONE Receiver. Today on the FAN, Ken Weinman is beating the drum for OZZIE to pick up the phone and inquire about MICHAEL CRABTREE, who is holding out on the 49 ERs? How many draft picks would this Take? The ravens could afford him this year at the ROOKIE SALARY. Something to consider.

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