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Charles Barkley was involved in a hockey hazing? Who is shocked?

The clock is ticking before Charles Barkley does something that ends his career as a sports commentator. That isn’t exactly something anyone needs a fortune teller for, I’d say. Moderator.

Barkley’s tomfoolery cost rookie defenseman Jared Spurgeon $5,000 for the meal. Wonder how many homeless people in the area that amount might have fed for a night. No, this isn’t the dangerous part of hazing unless impressionable high school students get the idea that such buffoonery is normal in sport, but it does point out a certain “goofball” mentality about the pro-hazing commentators that ESPN managers will have to face when Barkley eventually self destructs. For example, when goofball towel wavers taunted him…how did he react? Predictably. Yet, why did a producer put this career in front of screaming fans.

For other ESPN audio views on hazing back in football spring training, click here.

By Hank Nuwer

Journalist Hank Nuwer is the Alaska author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. In April of 2024, the Alaska Press Club awarded him first place in the Best Columnist division and Best Humorist, second place.

He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His current book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press. He is married to Malgorzata Wroblewska Nuwer of Warsaw, Poland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Nuwer is a former columnist for the Greenville (Ohio)Early Bird and former managing editor of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Alaska.
Nuwer was named the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists columnist of the year in 2021 for his “After Darke” column in the Early Bird. He also won third place for the column in 2022 from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He and his wife Gosia, recently of Union City, Ind., have owned 20 acres in Alaska for many years. “The move is a sort-of coming home for us,” said Nuwer. As a journalist, he’s written about the Alaskan Iditarod sled-dog race and other Alaska topics. Read his musings in his blog at Real Alaska Daily--http://realalaskadaily.com and in his weekly column "Far from Randolph" in the Winchester Star-Gazette of Randolph County, Indiana.

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