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Stephen A. Smith on Damar Hamlin, Houston Texans ‘disgrace’ | One-on-one with Stephanie Ruhle

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Read Time:10 Minute, 18 Second

>> THERE IS MORE GOOD NEWS FOR DAMAR HAMLIN THE BUFFALO BILLS SAFETY WAS RELEASED FROM THE HOSPITAL WEDNESDAY AND CLEARED BY DOCTORS TO CONTINUE REHAB AT HOME, AND WITH HIS TEAM JUST NINE DAYS AFTER HIS HEART STOPPED ON THE FOOTBALL FIELD IT IS AN INCREDIBLE DEVELOPMENT IN WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN A HURRY THICK EVENT. AS THE NEW YORK TIMES POINTS OUT QUOTE HIS CLOSE CALL WITH DEATH, THE LIFESAVING AID PERFORMED BY MEDICS AND HIS RISE FROM HARDSCRABBLE BEGINNINGS TO COMMUNITY BEACON ARE NOW THREADS WOVEN TO TRIUMPHANT EVENT, TH LEAD KNOWS WELL HOW TO USE THESE STORIES TO ITS BENEFIT.

HERE IS STEPHEN A SMITH, HE'S A MEDIA MOGUL FIRST STATE AND CURRENT HOST OF THE NEW PODCAST NO MERCY. STEPHEN A SMITH, I'M SO GLAD YOU'RE HERE. >> PLEASURE TO MEET YOU. >> I WANT TO START WITH THE MORE HAMLIN IT IS EXTRAORDINARY HIS RECOVERY, BUT WHEN YOU SAW THAT HIT YOU SAID VIOLENCE IS NEVER GOING AWAY IN SPORTS, WE WATCH IT, WE LOVE IT DO WE JUST NEED TO ACCEPT THIS IS WHAT WE WANT TO SEE ON THE FIELD, OR START TO QUESTION WHAT IS IT THAT WE'RE DEMANDING? >> FIRST OF ALL YOU NEVER WANT TO SEE THAT, BECAUSE IN ALL MY YEARS OF COVERING SPORTS WE HAVE NEVER SEEN THAT.

I CERTAINLY WOULDN'T ACCUSE FANS IN AMERICA OR ACROSS THE GLOBE OF WANTING TO SEE SOMEBODY NEARLY DIE BECAUSE THERE WAS SOMEBODY NAMED CHUCK USE THAT DIED IN 1971 AND THAT WAS THE ONLY DEATH THAT EVER OCCURRED ON A NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE FIELD, HE COLLAPSED RIGHT IN FRONT OF DICK BUT KISS, SO WE UNDERSTAND THAT BUT AS IT PERTAINS TO THE VIOLENCE YOU TALK ABOUT THE DAYS OF THE ROMAN GLADIATOR FOR CRYING OUT LOUD WHERE SPORTS INVOLVED LIFE AND DEATH, THAT IS NOT LITERALLY THE CASE FOR THE MOST PART WE RECOGNIZE THAT BUT THIS BOXING, THIS UFC AND THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE AND WE TALK ABOUT THESE COLLUSION'S, CAR ACCIDENT GOING OVER 40 MILES PER HOUR, IT'S INCREDIBLY VIOLENT BUT THAT IS WHERE THE NFL SELLS IT'S NOT VIOLENCE PER SE BUT IT IS A LOT OF SKILL AND TALENT THAT GOES WITH IT BUT VIOLENCE COMES WITH IT, THE PLAYERS SIGN UP FOR IT, THEY KNOW WHAT THEY ARE RISKING AND THE FANS LOVE IT AND THEY ARE NOT GOING ANYWHERE BECAUSE THE NFL'S KING BY A MILE, IT'S A MULTI BILLION DOLLAR CONGLOMERATE, IT IS NOT GOING ANYWHERE AND THAT'S WHAT I MEANT WHEN I SAID PEOPLE NEED TO GET USED TO THAT.

PEOPLE SIGN UP TO THAT, THEY LOOK FOR TO IT AND IF YOU'RE THE HOME TEAM YOU WANT TO SOMEBODY PUT ON THEIR BACKSIDE, YOU WANT THEM TO GET UP, BE SAFE, YOU WANT THEM TO BE HEALTHY BUT IF YOU HAVE TO RATTLE THEIR CAGE A LITTLE BIT TO WIN A FOOTBALL GAME THAT'S WHAT FANS WANT, NO MATTER WHAT THEY SAY. >> LET'S GO TO MIAMI, THEY ARE NOT GOING TO PLAY THIS WEEKEND, FAILED CONCUSSION PROTOCOL, NONE OF THIS PUSHES THE NFL TO SAY, WE HAVE TO MAKE THIS GAME SAFER? I'M >> TALKING ABOUT THE FANS AS IT PERTAINS TO THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE OFFICE I THINK THAT THEY'VE EXHAUSTED MEASURES AND WILL CONTINUE TO STRIVE TO EXHAUST MEASURES, I KNOW THE EXECUTIVE VP OF THE NFL PERSONALLY, I'VE KNOWN HIM FOR A QUARTER CENTURY AN INCREDIBLY GOOD MAN, CONSCIENTIOUS AND SOMEBODY THAT PLAYED A SIGNIFICANT ROLES IN THE MEDICS BEING AVAILABLE ON BOTH TEAMS TO ASSIST DAMAR HIM LYNN, COMMISSIONER RUSH GOODELL AND OTHERS THEY'VE TRIED TO ENFORCE RULES AND REGULATIONS TO PROTECT A QUARTERBACK AT ALL COST.

BUT WHEN YOU'RE A MINIATURE QUARTERBACK AND YOU HAVE 290 POUND, 300 POUND DUDES COMING AT YOU FULL SPEED BLIND CITING YOU, ET CETERA IT MIGHT RATTLE YOUR CAGE, IN THE CASE OF HIM HE GOT HURT IN A HOME GAME AGAINST THE BUFFALO BILLS, GOT UP FELL BACK DOWN CLEARLY LOOKED WOBBLE AND DEVOID OF HIS SENSES AND WAS LEFT IN THAT GAME, THAT WAS PROBLEMATIC AND THE LEAD EVERYBODY FOUND ON THE LEAD AND THE MIAMI DOLPHINS SPECIFICALLY. FOUR DAYS LATER HE WAS IN A GAME AGAINST THE CINCINNATI BANGLES ON THE SAME FEEL THAT THE MORE HAMLIN GOT HURT, HE HAD TO BE PUT IN AN AMBULANCE AND CARRIED OFF THE FIELD BECAUSE HE GOT HIT SO HARD, HE WAS CONCUSSED AND IT LOOK LIKE WRIGGLE MORTISE KICKED IN FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, THAT'S HOW SCARY IT WAS. WEEKS LATER HE IS BACK ON THE FOOTBALL FIELD HE'S PLAYING WELL AND THEN HE LITERALLY FINISHES THE GAME AND THE NEXT DAY, THEY DISCOVER HE IS CONCUSSED AND HE HASN'T PLAYED OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF WEEKS, SO IT IS DEFINITELY A CONCERN, THE NFL IS GOING TO DO WHAT IT CAN, ALL I WANT EVERYONE TO UNDERSTAND IS THE GAMES WILL CONTINUE, BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT THE FANS WANT, AND WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE FANS EVERYBODY CAN POINT OUT THE LEGAL THEY WANT TO, WHEN YOU HAVE A PRODUCT THAT FANS CRAVE FOR IT DOESN'T GO AWAY.

>> SOUNDS LIKE FACEBOOK. >> IT'S REALITY. >> IT'S TRUE. LET'S ASK ABOUT A DIFFERENT REALITY WE'RE NOW APPROACHING, THERE WILL ONLY BE TWO BLACK COACHES LEFT IN THE NFL, I KNOW YOU HAVE A VIEW ON THAT. >> OF COURSE I DO. THE HOUSTON TEXANS, ARE ANOTHER DISGRACE I'VE SAID THIS ON ESPN, ON MY PODCAST AND I'LL SAY IT ON THE SHOW — >> YOU HAVE AN ISSUE WITH THE WHOLE STATE OF TEXAS.

>> I DON'T LIKE DALLAS COWBOYS FANS, THE ORGANIZATION DOESN'T BOTHER ME BUT THE FANS GET ON MY LAST NERVE, THAT'S A DIFFERENT SUBJECT FOR ANOTHER DAY, AND IT'S ALL IN FUN. WITH THE HOUSTON TEXAS I'M VERY SERIOUS, THEY HIRED A COACH IN DAVID COLEY WHO IS DOING A RESPECTABLE JOB FIRED HIM AFTER ONE YEAR, BEFORE THEY HIRED LOVEY SMITH TODAY JUST FIRED AFTER ONE YEAR ANOTHER AFRICAN AMERICAN COACH BACK TO BACK, AFRICAN AMERICAN COACHES THAT WERE LET GO, I WANT TO REMIND EVERYBODY THAT THEY WERE INTERESTED IN HIRING AN INDIVIDUAL BY THE NAME OF JOSH MCCARRON, HE WAS A QUARTERBACK THAT SPENT 12 YEARS IN THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE, GOOD FOOTBALL MIND, CEREBRAL GUY, EVERYBODY RESPECTED HIM, HE NEVER CUSHION ANY LEVEL, HE WAS A VOLUNTEER ASSISTANT COACH AT A HIGH SCHOOL, AND WORD GOT OUT THAT THE HOUSTON TEXANS WERE INTERESTED IN HIM AND ONLY DEFENDED THEY SHIFT GEARS AND GO IN THE DIRECTION OF A LOVELY SMITH, EVEN JOSH ACCORDING TO REPORTS, ANYWAY, SAY I REALLY APPRECIATED BUT THERE ARE PEOPLE FOR MORE QUALIFIED THAN ME TO BE COACHING A NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE TOO BECAUSE HE KNEW HE DIDN'T HAVE A RESUME, YET THEY WERE INTERESTED IN HIRING THIS MAN BEFORE THEY HIRED A BLACK MAN, WHEN YOU CONSIDER THE HISTORY OF THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE PARTICULARLY SINCE ART SHELBY BECAME THE HEAD COACH IN THE 80S AT THE TIME, THERE HAS BEEN ABOUT 191 HEAD COACHES THAT HAVE BEEN HIRED IN THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE, ABOUT 24 HAVE BEEN BLACK AND THIS IS IN A LEAGUE WHERE 75% OF THE PLAYERS ARE BLACK.

IT ISN'T MESSAGE, WE UNDERSTAND WHAT THAT MESSAGE IS THE NFL IS CONCERNED ABOUT ABOUT THE OWNERS DON'T SEEM TO GIVE A DAMN ABOUT IT. THAT'S A PROBLEM, AS AN AFRICAN AMERICAN, I'M NOT GONNA SIT IDLY BY AND LET THOSE KIND OF THINGS HAPPENED WITHOUT MAKING SIGNIFICANT NOISE ABOUT, IT'S AN EMBARRASSMENT, IT'S A DISGRACE AND AS PART I'M CONCERNED, THE GENERAL MANAGER FOR THE HOUSTON TEXANS SHOULD FIRE HIMSELF BECAUSE THAT'S HOW AWFUL HE HAS BEEN, HIS NAME IS NICK, IN CASE YOU ALL DIDN'T KNOW. >> YOU HAVE MADE THE DECISION IN EXPANDING INTO THIS PODCAST'S WORDS THAT YOU HAVE A LOT TO SAY NOT JUST ABOUT SPORTS BUT NOW ABOUT POLITICS. I'VE HEARD YOU SAY BEFORE, YOU WOULD NEVER HAVE LASTED IN POLITICS YOU WOULD'VE GOTTEN KILLED BECAUSE YOU SPEAK YOUR MIND. >> I PROBABLY WOULD'VE GONE ASSASSINATED, I BELIEVE THAT, I'M NOT JOKING ABOUT THAT EITHER. BECAUSE I DON'T MINCE WORDS, I'M NOT THE GREATEST DUDE IN THE WORLD, SHAKING HANDS AND KISSING BABIES, I LOVE THE KIDS BUT IN THE SAME BREATH WE KNOW WHAT POLITICIANS LIKE TO DO IN TERMS OF SMILING AND FOLKS FACES, AND WHAT HAVE YOU, NOT ALL OF THEM, BUT SOME OF THEM YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE BETTER BEHAVIOR — >> THEY'RE NOT SHAKING HANDS OR KISSING BABIES RIGHT NOW, DID YOU SEE WHAT HAPPENED ON THE HOUSE FLOOR LAST WEEK? >> I SAW WHAT HAPPENED ON THE HOUSE FLOOR BUT THAT WAS REPUBLICANS FIGHTING AND 20 REPUBLICANS DECIDED TO GET IN THE WAY OF THE WISHES OF 200 TO 201 WHICH FOR KEVIN MCCARTHY TO BE THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE, OBVIOUSLY WHEN WE THINK ABOUT CAPITOL HILL IT IS A SHAME A TIME BECAUSE TO ME, MY WISHES IS FOR DECORUM I'M NOT INTERESTED IN TAKING SIDES, I'M AN ISSUE BY ISSUE BASIS KIND OF GUY, SOME THINGS I'M LIBERAL AND — PARTICULARLY MY FINANCES, BUT AT THE END OF THE DAY AS AMERICAN CITIZENS I DON'T THINK IT IS TOO MUCH TO ASK FOR POLITICIANS TO BE ON CAPITOL HILL AND TO GET ALONG WELL ENOUGH TO TALK WITH ONE ANOTHER AND GET THINGS DONE BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT YOU PROMISED THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WHEN YOU ARE CAMPAIGNING FOR AN ELECTED SEAT.

WERE YOU PLAYING GAMES AND WHAT HAVE YOU, YOUR PLAYING GAMES WITH THE LIVES OF 350 PLUS AMERICAN CITIZENS AND I WOULD AS PEOPLE TO CONSIDER THIS. DO YOU REALIZE THE TIMES THAT WE'RE LIVING IN WITH THE NONSENSE THAT GOES ON IN CAPITOL HILL, THE WORK IS IN THE CAMPAIGN ONCE YOU'RE ELECTED ALL YOU LITERALLY HAVE TO DO IS SHOW UP AND PULL A LEVEL FOR YOUR SIZE OF THE FENCE, BECAUSE — OR >> NOT 40 OR SIDE, FOR YOUR CONSTITUENTS. >> I'M JUST SAYING THEY'RE NOT DOING THAT WITH THEY'RE GOING TO DO IS IF I'M A REPUBLICAN I'M GOING TO SIDE WITH THE REPUBLICANS IF I'M A DEMOCRAT I'M GONNA SIDE WITH THE DEMOCRATS, THE PRESSURE THAT IS BROUGHT TO BE FOR YOU TO CAPITULATE TO THE SIDE THAT YOU'VE CAMPAIGNED ON IT IS ALL THAT YOU HAVE TO DO ONCE YOU'RE IN OFFICE, THAT MEANS YOU REALLY COULD GET AWAY, I'M NOT SEEING LITERALLY THAT THEY DON'T WORK I'M SAYING THAT YOU CAN GET AWAY LITERALLY WAS NOT WORKING, I LITERALLY CAN RUN FOR OFFICE AND IF I'M FORTUNATE ENOUGH TO GET ELECTED ALL I HAVE TO DO IS SHOW UP ON CAPITOL HILL WHEN IT IS MY TURN TO VOTE AND VOTE FOR THE SIDE THAT I'M ON WHETHER IT IS A DAY OR IN OUR THAT'LL HAVE TO DO, BECAUSE THAT IS THE WAY THINGS HAVE BEEN GOING IN OUR COUNTRY OVER THE LAST SEVERAL YEARS AND IT IS ANOTHER DEPICTS GRACE AND THE AMERICAN PEOPLE ARE THE ONES SUFFERING FOR IT AND I DON'T LIKE IT.

>> ALL RIGHT THEN, STEPHEN A SMITH, THANK YOU SO MUCH. >> THANK YOU. >> FOR THOSE ELECTED OFFICIALS, I MIGHT SAY YOU CAN GO INTO WORK AND DON'T JUST VOTE DEEDE OR ARE, DO A L.

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