Saturday, October 1, 2011

Mike Ditka would ‘spit on’ author of the Walter Payton book


(Yahoo Sports) Count Mike Ditka as one of the displeased. Payton's former coach, who's never been called shy, told NBC Chicago that he'd like to spit on author Jeff Pearlman and that he has "no respect for him." He also called Pearlman gutless on ESPN Radio:

"If you're going to wait 12 years after somebody's passed, come on. This is the sign of a gutless individual who would do this. Totally gutless who would hide behind that, and that's what he's done."

Ditka has likely only seen the excerpts that have been released and not the entire book, which comes out Tuesday. He's not the only one with these opinions, though. Pearlman's heard a lot of them, and he addressed them in a blog post Thursday. Here's a snippet:

You are a journalist, trying to paint the full picture. The FULL picture. You have to, in the name of honesty; in the name of authenticity. Otherwise, why have biographies at all? Why look back at the lives of JFK and Ronald Reagan and MLK and Malcolm X and Jim Morrison and Marilyn Monroe and on and on and on? What's to learn … to understand … to appreciate if all we do is turn the deceased into unflawed icons?...

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