In a phone interview merely a couple of days ago, former Tour de France winner Floyd Landis admitted to the use of performance enhancing drugs during his time as a professional cyclist, and importantly, during the year he won the Tour de France. This admission comes years after what Landis called allegations (but what many, including authorities, called absolute proof) surfaced about his use of PEDs, allegations he denied at the time. Simultaneously while admitting to his own use, Landis alleged that the use of PEDs was “cool in cycling then,” and he continued, “Even hipper than baseball. Hipper than listening to bands like Yeasayer and The Shins before anyone else.”
While this admission comes as no surprise, the backlash that has emerged as a result just may. Athletes with no suspicion of performance enhancing drug use have now come to the forefront, placed under scrutiny for what Landis calls, “playing it fair like a bunch of pussies.”
In a recent press conference, ESPN President George Bodenheimer was asked to come up with an athlete he did NOT suspect of using PEDs. After an extended silence, Bodenheimer wiped some sweat from his brow before an unnamed reporter in the back of the room shouted, “Jeter probably didn’t! Probably!” After a bit of rambling and hubbub, another reporter shouted, “Kevin Durant. Yeah! That dude is skinny!”
The press conference continued, with Durant and Jeter getting scrutiny for their “fair play” and “likability,” with some sports writers going as far as saying that Durant and Jeter are “borderline role-models,” a term that hadn’t been thrown around since Sosa and McGwire in 1999. Wait, crap.
The reporters, with a combined 176 years of sports writing, continued to list off players they did not suspect of steroid use, and, in addition to Durant and Jeter, they agreed upon “Kelly Slater, Danica whatever, no one in the NFL,” and “for the love of god, please Griffey, please.”
Landis has added his name to the list of PED tainted athletes, which now extends to Landis and apparently everyone else, ever. (and note, that list is still incomplete.)