Peter Bodo: Maria Sharapova is not a true Russian

Dutch-Guy

Legend
OK, I'll ask the question straight up: Is anyone else getting a little tired of Maria Sharapova at these Olympic Games? Ordinarily as cool as a Hitchcock blonde (at least when she's not uttering that war cry with which she punctuates every shot, much to the annoyance of pretty much everyone), she's been visibly and volcanically emotional this past week at the tennis event at Wimbledon.
Here's Sharapova, who's seeded No. 3 at these Games, and who has reached the final against Serena Williams, seemingly falling over (with all the grace of a crooked stack of library books) as she hits a winner, crying out (or was that part of a "shrunt," the cross between a shriek and a grunt) and clenching her fist so tightly that it seems painful. She looks heavenward. It's 15-all in the second game of the match. Oh my.

Desperate times call for desperate measures, you say. Yet Sharapova has very little to feel desperate about. Sure, she's never tasted Olympic success, and winning a gold medal here could very well make 2012 her career year. (She completed her career Grand Slam just two months ago at the French Open on a surface that once made her feel, in her own words, like "a cow on ice.")

But Sharapova already may be the most popular female athlete on the planet (at least if you count by Facebook "likes"), she's considered a brand and she's made untold riches -- all at the age of 24, although if you haven't been paying attention, you might think she's 30-something. So the only real explanation for Sharapova's exuberant embrace of the Olympic effort is the one she so eagerly renders -- the patriotism that she's been hawking with as much gusto as she brings to pitching Samsung products or handbags by Cole Haan (a Nike subsidiary).

That's a little odd, because unlike many immigrants who had to find their fame and fortune (or, for that matter, a decent, safe way of life) in the United States, Sharapova's patriotism is as thoroughly "red" as the Nike dress she's wearing at Wimbledon. She can't stop babbling about how much it means to be able to represent Russia (she was the team's flag bearer), the country she left at age 6 (under the wing of her ambitious tennis dad, Yuri) in order to capitalize on the opportunities presented in the U.S.

Sharapova's attitude and many of her comments are downright baffling. Once, she all but gloated about how eager she was to stomp the U.S. in a Fed Cup match -- although she rarely bothers to represent Russia in Fed Cup and reportedly doesn't get along with her teammates when she does. She says next to nothing about the good fortune that has befallen her since she arrived in the U.S. Given that her home is Bradenton, Fla., and she seems to spend a lot of time on the West Coast, I assume she just parachutes into Russia once in a blue moon.

Can it be that hard for Sharapova to appreciate and perhaps even articulate how lucky she was to leave oppressive, economically stagnant Russia and wind up in a place where so many people helped her along her career path? Is this obsession with her homeland just some bizarre extension of the Daddy love she has always felt for Yuri? If you didn't know better, you'd think her coaches were Leo Tolstoy and Anton Chekhov, not Robert Lansdorp and Nick Bollettieri.

The funny thing is that when I criticize Sharapova for being ungracious, or even ungrateful, I'm accused of being some sort of jingoistic zealot (full disclosure, I was an immigrant -- just like Sharapova). If that's so offensive, why isn't Sharapova's Russian patriotism equally scorned?

I don't have a problem with people who are unpatriotic. I do have a problem with people who think patriotism is OK for some, but not for others (in other words, "Americans"). Maybe Sharapova really is the Russian patriot she aspires to be, but to me she seems more like just another clueless celebrity who can't make two and two add up to four

http://espn.go.com/tennis/blog/_/na...c-tennis-maria-sharapova-patriotism-authentic

To sum this article up: Maria Sharapova IS an American and SHOULD represent the US.
 
Sharapova can represent who she wants and may feel a stronger link to Russia than America, despite all the means it has provided for her. I think the author doesn't understand that despite being in another country, your family and culture have a powerful influence on you.

I moved to New Zealand at the age of 8 but still feel more Serbian than Kiwi despite having spent a larger portion of my life here, due to strong family influence.
 

OTMPut

Hall of Fame
Maria is a product of one of those top secret KGB programs during the cold war era. Ruskis figured that it was better to send kids into US and use American training facilities and eventually get gold medals for the motherland.
 

Dutch-Guy

Legend
Sharapova can represent who she wants and may feel a stronger link to Russia than America, despite all the means it has provided for her. I think the author doesn't understand that despite being in another country, your family and culture have a powerful influence on you.

I moved to New Zealand at the age of 8 but still feel more Serbian than Kiwi despite having spent a larger portion of my life here, due to strong family influence.
Good point.It is Sharapova's business to choose whatever nationality she wants to represent.
Had she chosen to become a US citizen, the same Bodo 'd be complaining she's not "American enough".
 

PSNELKE

Legend
Only an American can come up with this ****.

I was born in France but feel as a German, as my parents are German.
 

rrito

Rookie
So Maria is a true American? This Bodo is way in over his head. Stick to writing tennis articles please (even tho he does a pretty ****ty job at it) and leave the political side of the sport to arrogant, self-righteous, opinionated American rednecks who lack the capacity and decency to understand immigrant culture and self-identity
 

tennisaddict

Bionic Poster
By far the worst article he has written. Lost any credibility that was left.

Trying to get some attention/ web site traffic talking about patriotism during the olympics.

He talks as though Sharapova is the only athlete who has crossed borders to get ahead in her career. If she is away from Russia from age 6, obviously it is going to be hard to bond with her Russian team mates.

Fault her for her shrieks and grunts any amount, but getting at her with patriotism is cheap trick.

Major Fail Bodo.
 

tistrapukcipeht

Professional
She was born in Russia from Russian parents, so it makes sense for her to play for Russia, it doesn;t matter what He thinks anyway, who cares about Sharapova representing Russia.
 

ollinger

G.O.A.T.
Bodo's journalism can be faulted here for picking on Sharapova alone, when there are many players who came to the US (or Spain, or wherever) quite young and retain allegiance to their country of origin. Sharapova's comrade Dmitry Tursonov became a Californian at age 12 yet has played Davis Cup for Russia on a number of occasions (though Dmitry has looked into US citizenship). Svetlana Kuznetzova has yet to play a Fed Cup match for Spain. Singling out one player for a common tendency is just celebrity-bashing, not journalism.
 

Bartelby

Bionic Poster
The Cold War is over so there's neither need nor reason to break ties completely with their mother country.
 

drakulie

Talk Tennis Guru
So Maria is a true American? This Bodo is way in over his head. Stick to writing tennis articles please (even tho he does a pretty ****ty job at it) and leave the political side of the sport to arrogant, self-righteous, opinionated American rednecks who lack the capacity and decency to understand immigrant culture and self-identity
Your post is just as stupid as Bodos article.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
Serena Williams is by far the most well-known female athlete in the world. Sharapova is probably only about 1/5 as famous.
Yea but maria is 5 X better looking and pleasing to the eye. as well as esthetically pleasing too. Anyway, Maria is really an American as apple pie. Being a russian citizen affords her some priviliges that she can't get as American. She wants to have her Pie and eat it too.:)
 

Soianka

Hall of Fame
Yea but maria is 5 X better looking and pleasing to the eye. as well as esthetically pleasing too. Anyway, Maria is really an American as apple pie. Being a russian citizen affords her some priviliges that she can't get as American. She wants to have her Pie and eat it too.:)
It is your opinion that she is better looking.

I think Serena is gorgeous and Maria is awkward looking.

Both subjective opinions, not objective facts.

Who cares what country she is from. She should try to play a little bit better when it counts.
 

The-Champ

Legend
Maria is a product of one of those top secret KGB programs during the cold war era. Ruskis figured that it was better to send kids into US and use American training facilities and eventually get gold medals for the motherland.
hopefully they wont execute her for failing epically. The Queen gave her a beating she will not forget for a long time.
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
Sharapova can represent who she wants and may feel a stronger link to Russia than America, despite all the means it has provided for her. I think the author doesn't understand that despite being in another country, your family and culture have a powerful influence on you.

I moved to New Zealand at the age of 8 but still feel more Serbian than Kiwi despite having spent a larger portion of my life here, due to strong family influence.
i'm not gonna tell you or maria how to feel but it is wrong imo for ppl to come to a country use it and then run back to their home country like nothing happened. but in that lies the irony maria never claimed america, but america wanted to push her as the next evert while giving shade to a proud american like serena so its karma.
 

woodrow1029

Hall of Fame
If bodo wrote the article, it automatically loses all credibility. I can't believe his stuff still gets published.
 

Evan77

Banned
first of all, I hate Bodo and his flashy style of journalism. complete tool. Maria was born in Russia, feels like Russian, so what is the problem here? Should Djokovic play for Monaco because he lives there?

She is probably the most popular tennis player in the world, and I'd go as far to say maybe even the most recognizable female athlete. Serena will never reach that sort of 'stardom'. She makes more money from endorsements than Serena.
I guess being blond, tall and pretty does pay off :).

Serena is a better player because she simply overpowers everyone on the tour.
 

smoledman

G.O.A.T.
Agreed Sharapova can't even speak Russian, she's American. What we really had was an all-American gold medal match.
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
Good point.It is Sharapova's business to choose whatever nationality she wants to represent.
Had she chosen to become a US citizen, the same Bodo 'd be complaining she's not "American enough".
Only an American can come up with this ****.

I was born in France but feel as a German, as my parents are German.
So Maria is a true American? This Bodo is way in over his head. Stick to writing tennis articles please (even tho he does a pretty ****ty job at it) and leave the political side of the sport to arrogant, self-righteous, opinionated American rednecks who lack the capacity and decency to understand immigrant culture and self-identity
Yes, talk about a disgustingly jingoistic article from Bodo.
the man is an idiot but he is right. w/o america there is no maria...
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
first of all, I hate Bodo and his flashy style of journalism. complete tool. Maria was born in Russia, feels like Russian, so what is the problem here? Should Djokovic play for Monaco because he lives there?

She is probably the most popular tennis player in the world, and I'd go as far to say maybe even the most recognizable female athlete. Serena will never reach that sort of 'stardom'. She makes more money from endorsements than Serena.
I guess being blond, tall and pretty does pay off :).

Serena is a better player because she simply overpowers everyone on the tour.
PURE IGNORANCE^
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
"I do have a problem with people who think patriotism is OK for some, but not for others"

I do have a problem with Peter Bozo for writing this without evidence. When did Sharapova say that it is not OK for others to be patriotic? How does her "Russian" patriotism imply this?

Bozo really has some issues. He is probably one of those who feels that Sharapova owes something to him because he has lived longer that her as a immigrant in the US. Sorry, no one owes anyone anything. Sometimes these people thing that they "built" the country or something like that. The only requirement for someone is to follow the law. She can reside in the US as long as she wants if that is legal and still remain a Russian. It has nothing to do with Bozo.
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
"I do have a problem with people who think patriotism is OK for some, but not for others"

I do have a problem with Peter Bozo for writing this without evidence. When did Sharapova say that it is not OK for others to be patriotic? How does her "Russian" patriotism imply this?

Bozo really has some issues. He is probably one of those who feels that Sharapova owes something to him because he has lived longer that her as a immigrant in the US. Sorry, no one owes anyone anything. Sometimes these people thing that they "built" the country or something like that. The only requirement for someone is to follow the law. She can reside in the US as long as she wants if that is legal and still remain a Russian. It has nothing to do with Bozo.
the point is she didn't just live here, she recieved alot of benefits as well.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
the point is she didn't just live here, she recieved alot of benefits as well.
That is not the point. The point is what is the evidence that she is against patriotism by others? Don't change the subject (she has made enough money for other people than you will ever pay with your taxes after your benefits are subtracted out in your entire life, so don't even go there).
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
That is not the point. The point is what is the evidence that she is against patriotism by others? Don't change the subject (she has made enough money for other people than you will ever pay with your taxes after your benefits are subtracted out in your entire life, so don't even go there).
petty insults because you can't refute my point. relax don't get butthurt because you are wrong. she gets taxed on an income she makes because of the tennis training she recieved in america for free....the end.
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
the point is she EARNED it. nobody gave her anything on a silver plate. and you dare to call me ignorant, whatever dude.
what earn? she got a scholarship to come here without that no pro tennis career. btw you are ignorant. ignorant of facts,reality,etc.
 

tenniscasey

Semi-Pro
Serena Williams is by far the most well-known female athlete in the world. Sharapova is probably only about 1/5 as famous.
According to Googlefight, Serena Williams clocks about 2,550,000 results, Maria Sharapova about 2,840,000 results.

According to my own Google, Serena about 28,700,000 results, Maria also about 28,700,000 results. (Might just be some sort of weird Google cap on results? I'm not sure.)

Anecdotally, I'd say I see Maria in a lot more endorsements than Serena, but I suspect their endorsement income is actually pretty similar.

So I'd give them nearly equal footing. Certainly it's absurd to call Masha 1/5 as famous as Serena.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
petty insults because you can't refute my point. relax don't get butthurt because you are wrong. she gets taxed on an income she makes because of the tennis training she recieved in america for free....the end.
That is not the point of the Bozo article - don't try to twist it. Even he is not that stupid. She received free training from Nick - why don't you go and try to achieve something like him LOL
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
According to Googlefight, Serena Williams clocks about 2,550,000 results, Maria Sharapova about 2,840,000 results.

According to my own Google, Serena about 28,700,000 results, Maria also about 28,700,000 results. (Might just be some sort of weird Google cap on results? I'm not sure.)

Anecdotally, I'd say I see Maria in a lot more endorsements than Serena, but I suspect their endorsement income is actually pretty similar.

So I'd give them nearly equal footing. Certainly it's absurd to call Masha 1/5 as famous as Serena.
that is anecdotal evidence. li na makes more than both of them does that make her more famous. cindy margulis in her prime got more web downloads than anyone but most ppl don't know who she is. btw alot of maria's money was front loaded by nike after her third major assuming she was gonna dominate. after her injury they have been regretting it.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
Bodo's journalism can be faulted here for picking on Sharapova alone, when there are many players who came to the US (or Spain, or wherever) quite young and retain allegiance to their country of origin. Sharapova's comrade Dmitry Tursonov became a Californian at age 12 yet has played Davis Cup for Russia on a number of occasions (though Dmitry has looked into US citizenship). Svetlana Kuznetzova has yet to play a Fed Cup match for Spain. Singling out one player for a common tendency is just celebrity-bashing, not journalism.
Not to mention that Cecil Mamet played DC for Philippines
 

Evan77

Banned
what earn? she got a scholarship to come here without that no pro tennis career. btw you are ignorant. ignorant of facts,reality,etc.
gee, some of you Yanks are so silly ... it's really beyond me. what the heck her scholarship have to do with the fact that she became a top tennis player, multiple GS champion etc.? of course she earned it. what a tool you are. no wonder that Americans are so 'loved' everywhere in the world.

She was born in Russia, she feels Russian .... she can live anywhere she wants to. Only you can not comprehend something so simple.
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
That is not the point of the Bozo article - don't try to twist it. Even he is not that stupid. She received free training from Nick - why don't you go and try to achieve something like him LOL
you are real mad, calm down it's not that serious. the point of the article is maria claims russia but made her name because of america. this is not a debate about accomplishments. she has them which is not being questioned they point is her supposed ungratefulness to the country that made her.
 

Evan77

Banned
Serena's body is miles better looking than Sharapova's, that is fact.
lol, OK, I guess we all like different things. Her ***, legs and boobs are bigger/thicker than, let's say, Masha/Kournikova combined :lol:
 
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DRII

G.O.A.T.
gee, some of you Yanks are so silly ... it's really beyond me. what the heck her scholarship have to do with the fact that she became a top tennis player, multiple GS champion etc.? of course she earned it. what a tool you are. no wonder that Americans are so 'loved' everywhere in the world.

She was born in Russia, she feels Russian .... she can live anywhere she wants to. Only you can not comprehend something so simple.

Haters gonna hate!

Tell you this: most of the world greatly favored the USA when Russia (Soviet Union) actually had comparable power! I guess it will take an authoritative and aggressive China to show you how lucky you are to be America's northern neighbor :twisted:
 

TERRASTAR18

Hall of Fame
gee, some of you Yanks are so silly ... it's really beyond me. what the heck her scholarship have to do with the fact that she became a top tennis player, multiple GS champion etc.? of course she earned it. what a tool you are. no wonder that Americans are so 'loved' everywhere in the world.

She was born in Russia, she feels Russian .... she can live anywhere she wants to. Only you can not comprehend something so simple.
again more ignorance. to be a top tennis player you need training. for training you need money. without money you need a scholarship. which is maria's story. no scholarship, no training, no top player, no slams. simple. ppl hate america so much but many of the olympic atheletes train in america: cavic, kitajima, dirk , many of the track stars and oh yeah the top two women's players in tennis.
 
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