The internet exploded last night after semi-sports blog Deadspin reported on a particular segment ESPN ran which asked fellow Rams players if they had showered with their new openly gay teammate.
The segment, “How Michael Sam is Fitting in With Rams Teammates” (seen below) comes off a lot worse on paper than they probably intended, but reading the transcript makes the network seem pretty focused on what the rest of the team seems to be treating as a non-issue.
Reporter Josina Anderson explained that one player told her that Sam was “simply just one of the guys, and he seems to be taking a rookie approach in terms of just listening and learning at his own pace.”
“[The player] said he was just trying to feel his way through and, perhaps, see what guys he can relate to,” she continued. “But another Rams defensive player told me — quote — ‘Sam is respecting our space.’”
“And that from his perspective, he seems to think that Michael Sam is waiting to kind of take a shower, as not to make his teammates feel uncomfortable,” Anderson said.
The ESPN correspondent added that two other players said that they could not verify the shower report because “they weren’t tracking that.”
“[Defensive tackle Kendall Langford] told me, ‘Listen, I have not been in the shower at the same time as Michael Sam.’ He said there definitely could be a million reasons as to why that is,” Anderson asserted. “He said he could be doing extra work on the practice field, he could be riding his bike, he could be doing extra cardio.”
Watch the segment below:
Shortly after news about the ESPN segment got out, fellow Rams player Chris Long tweeted out his own distaste for the questions asked by the sports network.