Doug Robinson: Why are so many defending Serena Williams' indefensible behavior?

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  • nanacarol7 Butler, AL
    Sept. 15, 2018 4:34 a.m.

    She was losing and she threw a tandrum. Bad sportsmanship on Williams' part. End of story.

  • New to Utah Provo, UT
    Sept. 14, 2018 10:54 p.m.

    Doug was spot on. Serena behaved horribly. She was trounced by a younger better player and she lost it. A true champion would appreciate a rising star and graciously congratulate her. The politically correct have forced us to tolerate her bad behavior much too long. Osaka deserved her time as champion but Serena’s actions denied her that. Where I come from we call that selfishness.

  • Former Coach ,
    Sept. 14, 2018 8:35 p.m.

    @Nanook of the North,

    You need to read more articles then. I have read several and listened to several others point out that this umpire has in fact give out conduct violations to several top players. It should be noted that some of the players have gone on to say that this umpire has a double standard. You talk about your own experiences as an official. Im my experience as a coach and a player, when an official (umpire) is assigned my game, I know exactly what to expect and what I can and can't do. The bottom line is Serena did this all on her own. She knows the rules, she should have stopped after the first penalty was issued, despite how trivial it was, and moved on. If a basketball player gets T'd up, he/she knows that the second T means they are ejected from the game. I agree this official treated Serena differently than Osaka, but then again Osaka wasn't calling him a thief and Osaka didn't break her racket.

  • oddman ,
    Sept. 14, 2018 4:43 p.m.

    She says she didn't see her coach giving signals. It doesn't take a turn of the head, only a quick glance of the eye to see him. He admitted coaching, and she says she didn't see it. Right. Many good comments on her bad example, her affects on Osaka, and i for one would like to see her retire. Her sister has much more class.

  • Nanook of the North Los Angeles, CA
    Sept. 14, 2018 2:29 p.m.

    Sure, coaching is a rule infraction. And how many times does it happen at that level? And how many times is it penalized?

    The issue here is INCONSISTENT officiating. I referee hockey (ice and roller). I'm not in the NHL, I just do kids and "beer leagues". The players can deal with it if they know this ref calls games "tight" or if this other ref "lets more stuff go". But if a ref is inconsistent? Those are the ones who get the most ire.

    Everything I've read since this happened, this official treated Serena Williams differently in this match than he has other players in other matches. Inconsistency. Given that, I'm cutting her a LOT of slack with this incident.

    And all the other comments here whining that she's expecting special treatment or something because she's black or a woman or liberal bias or whatever? Please. Really?

  • AlanSutton Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 14, 2018 2:02 p.m.

    Why didn't Williams throw her tantrum at her coach? A competent coach knows that coaching from the sidelines is against the rules. So why did Serena's coach make hand signals that could be interpreted by a judge as coaching?

  • ADN Weiser, ID
    Sept. 14, 2018 12:28 p.m.

    I guess fame isn't everything...

  • Mack2828 Kenton Vale, KY
    Sept. 14, 2018 12:17 p.m.

    Great article, Doug. Spot usual.

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 14, 2018 9:33 a.m.

    I am curious about the fist penalty "coaching". For the untrained observer (me), it was just a thumbs up from the person she calls coach. What does that mean? Play harder? User more top spin? Toss your serve higher? What if her sister in the crowd gave her this same thumbs up? Is that coaching too?

    And why can't a player be coached? Football, baseball, volleyball, gymnastics all have coaches. Tennis doesn't allow this? A lot of theatrics spawned from an opinion that "coaching happened". Oh, my! The horror! Such drama.

  • Max Upstate, NY
    Sept. 14, 2018 9:20 a.m.

    She is black and she is a woman and extremists believe that she should therefore be able to behave in any manner she pleases. Political Correctness requires anyone who disagrees to be called sexists and racists.

  • Andy Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 14, 2018 9:15 a.m.

    How can so many look through a lens that distorts reality to fit their sexism narrative? I guess for hammers everything is a nails, and for feminists everything is driven by sexism.

    I'll bet the ref will gladly never again ref a game in which Serena plays.

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 14, 2018 9:13 a.m.

    RiDal - Sandy, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 1:55 p.m.
    She's Black and she's a woman. She must be defended by the Politically-Correct police. She is also sponsored by Nike. It all goes together.


    As apposed to he's a man, it was just "locker room talk". He's sponsored by the GOP.

    Serena had a meltdown, it was wrong, but it's nothing new. The outrage by the right is ridiculous, specially in Australia.

  • cork Murray, UT
    Sept. 14, 2018 8:12 a.m.

    Time for this female to shut it down and go away from the public eye forever. Disgusting behavior and totally clueless thoughts and actions by her and her crowd of "supporters."

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Sept. 14, 2018 7:36 a.m.

    Quite right. It seems that some athletes have a chorus of enablers who excuse their conduct rather than holding them accountable. They aren't doing the athlete any favors and their conduct often spills over into the private lives. We have seen this sort of thing before haven't we?

  • Musketman Stansbury Park, UT
    Sept. 14, 2018 7:24 a.m.

    BR Jones. McEnroe, was fined over and over and over. He penalized over and over and over. He was suspended several times. As has ALL players who behave the way he did. Serena got penalized a whopping 17k on a 1.2 million dollar purse. The poor, poor oppressed Millionaire Black American female!

  • jazzfan4ever south jordan, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 10:34 p.m.

    Well said Doug. I thought her behavior was immature, selfish, and very, very poor sportsmanship. I too cannot believe she's being made a hero because of her actions. I felt embarrassed watching her act that way. Although, it's not the first and in all probability will not be the last time she has used such tactics. Her temper tantrum overshadowed a brilliant performance form Osaka.

  • SeattleAggie Maple Valley, WA
    Sept. 13, 2018 10:25 p.m.

    Because it’s 2018 and everything has to be racist, sexist, or both.

  • JSB Sugar City, ID
    Sept. 13, 2018 9:46 p.m.

    “There’s a lot of people who say way worse” said Serena. Her Justifying her bad behavior because other people have bad behavior makes no sense. Lots of people are poor sports so it's OK to be a poor sport. Lots of people are abusive so it's OK for everyone to be abusive. Lots of people are mean so it's OK for everyone to be mean. Lots of people cheat on their spouse so it's OK for everyone to cheat. I've pretty much given up watching sports and following politics and show business people because of participants' disgusting behavior. Would Serena want her children to justify misbehavior just because other people do it?

  • Bob67 Glenn Dale, MD
    Sept. 13, 2018 9:19 p.m.

    I think the initial accusation by chair umpire Carlos Ramos against Serena was biased and unprofessional. He sees her coach Patrick Mouratoglou signaling from the stands, and issues the warning to . . . Serena! What?

    In my book the chair should be watching the match, not the stands! If somehow the chair can't escape noticing a coach, the warning should have been issued to the coach, not to the player! There seems to be an assumption by the chair that Serena is trying to cheat, because of the actions of the coach. Instant guilt by association in his mind.

    Consider the following question: If the chair umpire were given pictures of the other 31 players in the women's draw, and also pictures of their coaches, how many could he pair up correctly? I think he did not like either Serena Williams or her coach, and acted accordingly.

    Serena was ambushed by a warning that she took as an accusation of cheating, while she was trying to focus on a match she was losing. No wonder she lost her cool! The subsequent escalation of the incident should not take away scrutiny from the chair umpire's initial action, which reeks of bias.

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 9:13 p.m.

    William's conduct was classless! She sets a horrific example for young people to be exposed to. I hope she grows up sometime before she embarrasses herself even more.

  • muncho6 salt lake city, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 9:13 p.m.

    Her coach admitted that his thumbs up sign was coaching her. End of story. I lost respect for her. She was throwing her fame around to manipulate the game and the officials. Good job ref.

  • oldbasketball Draper, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 8:21 p.m.

    Serena is all about Serena. The integrity of the game comes in a distant second. After playing tennis for almost twenty years she should certainly know the rules. This is not the first time she has acted like this (just like McEnroe and a few others). I just hope Osaka isn't so emotionally traumatized that she feels that if she wins again something bad will happen to her. Osaka was playing better than Williams and her movement on the court was much more fluid than her opponent. Williams seemed to be breathing hard and struggling with her physical conditioning while Osaka was showing no signs of tiring. I think Serena had about a 35% chance of winning the second set and less than 20% chance if the match had gone to a third set. I was hoping that she had outgrown this type of petulant behavior.

  • worf McAllen, TX
    Sept. 13, 2018 7:58 p.m.

    Making a big deal out of nothing. It was In the Heat of battle.

  • twinkleberry67 Layton, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 7:37 p.m.

    She lost because of sexism and racism? Yeah right, she didn’t even show up to the match and just expected to be given the trophy because she is Serena Williams. Ms. Williams exhibited the behavior of a way sore loser and she needs to take responsibility for it. Ms. Osaka has nothing to be ashamed about winning the tournament and should be proud of her achievements instead of being made to believe she is public enemy number 1 for winning. She has nothing to apologize for. Why has dignified sportsmanship gone the way of the dinosaur?

  • omahahusker Modesto, CA
    Sept. 13, 2018 6:54 p.m.

    Described by the president of the US Tennis Association as a "role model." Ms Williams should act like the role model she is. Many, many young people are watching her, many of the black community, is this how we want youth to progress into professional sports? From Colin Capernick to Le Bron James, seems like the more you complain about how the rules of professional sports are unfair, the bigger the crowd will be complaining.

    What we need is more professional sports players to be happy to win, but also gracious in defeat. That is a good definition of a "role model,"

  • Uteology East Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 13, 2018 6:18 p.m.

    This was not a one-time meltdown for Williams. Here is her history at the U.S. Open . -- DR

    Four times over 17 years?

    John McEnroe had four in one tournament.

    Who cares!

  • Harrison Bergeron Holladay , UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 5:28 p.m.

    The answer is in one word: politics. Actually it's two words: Liberal Politics. It has now infected sports. It permeates pro tennis, NFL football, NBA Basketball, Olympics, and many other sports. Notice how William's talked about how she was fighting for women. Of course that ignores that her opponent is also a woman (who idolized Williams) and was treated extremely badly for daring to beat her.

    Like our last Presidential election, there was an heir apparent to the throne. Then along comes somebody who has no business beating her and does. The reaction is liberal meltdown.

  • Strider2020 Draper, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 4:21 p.m.

    Totally agree with this article, I feel like Serena does this when she knows she is going to lose. I think for her own mental well being she's turns matches into controversy so she can have an excuse as to why she lost.

  • Lets check the facts Santa Fe, NM
    Sept. 13, 2018 3:46 p.m.

    @Br. Jones - East Coast, MD
    Sept. 13, 2018 2:00 p.m.
    It was terrible behavior. But it's more than a little odd that many, many male players ...

    Read the article:

    "(By the way — and not that it really matters — here are the totals for the 2018 U.S. Open code violations and penalties: men 86, women 22.)"

  • Minnesota Ute Bloomington, MN
    Sept. 13, 2018 3:00 p.m.

    You are right on Doug. The meltdown had nothing to do with sexism, racism or any other ism. She got frustrated because she was being outplayed and outhit by Osaka. Her behavior wasn't that unusual for Serena because in the past she has acted like a prima donna. She simply lost her composure because she saw a defeat staring her right in the eyes. Very boorish behavior.

  • t702 Las Vegas, NV
    Sept. 13, 2018 2:33 p.m.

    “but because I’m a woman, because I’m a woman, you’re going to take this away from me? That is not right.”

    Did Serena know that her opponent was a woman too? Did not know Serena's politics till this melt down - she needs to stick strictly to tennis. Those who defend Serena is purely politics, the liberal progressives are out defending their own no matter how dump and how wrong she was. It only mirrors the lefties behavior towards Trump, they blame everyone and anyone they disagree with except themselves!

  • Higue Payson, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 2:33 p.m.

    One other thing to note is her coach admitted to coaching her from the sideline right after the match. It proves she was bending the rules or her coach was (at least) since she declared she's not a cheater. She should apologize to him. You call him a liar and a thief and berate him on multiple occasions. Other professional players get penalties or technicals much quicker than her. How come no one comes to Draymond Green's defense for poor sportsmanship and losing his cool? At least he owns up to it and doesn't go off throughout the entire game about the same "wrong" call (actually correct call according to the coach's admittance). It's uprising since she is one of the all-time champions in any sport but she completely self-destruct there from a simple call. She could've argued initially, then in the press conference rip him and it wouldn't have cost her a game (she had other violations that match which added up and caused it). Osaka already beat her once anyways this year, so she is probably better than Serena right now. Congrats to Osaka! Very classy and humble.

  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 2:26 p.m.

    Why are so many defending it? Because it fits their agenda of anti male.

    And who cares if it means destroying another woman of color--she's half asian and as we've found out recently, for the bigots on the left, Asians are fair game and don't count.

    The "tolerant" left is very happy to be intolerant as much as they can.

  • Br. Jones East Coast, MD
    Sept. 13, 2018 2:00 p.m.

    It was terrible behavior. But it's more than a little odd that many, many male players throughout the history of tennis have exhibited similar behavior with no sanction. I remember John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors straight up cursing out the umpires decades ago, and to my knowledge neither of them got points or games deducted for their unsportsmanlike conduct. Hop on YouTube and you'll see plenty of more recent tennis players acting like rude idiots with no consequence (in some cases even involving the same umpire from the match with Serena Williams). Serena's behavior wasn't defensible, but the punishment should be dealt out to all offenders equally.

  • RiDal Sandy, UT
    Sept. 13, 2018 1:55 p.m.

    She's Black and she's a woman. She must be defended by the Politically-Correct police. She is also sponsored by Nike. It all goes together.