Before nude photos surfaced, only devoted NBA fans knew who George Hill was. But after — we all know his name. This can only be good for his career, and we will only see more athlete dong in the future.
Deadspin has long been your go-to source for professional athlete penis. It's a responsibility we take seriously. But our readers respond to these stories like nothing else; I'm still receiving emails from men and women who want nothing more than to tell me they enjoyed Grazy Sizemore's nude photos, and oh by the way, do I have any more I can send them.
Santonio Holmes. Chris Cooley. Grady Sizemore. Greg Oden. These are all superstars, and they don't need the "exposure." But Visanthe Shiancoe only became a household name after his Shiancock made a national television appearance. I don't know if George Hill had that in mind, but he probably should have.
I didn't know who George Hill was until recently. From a small school, he's a late first-round draft pick, who had an undistinguished rookie year. But last month he began starting in San Antonio. And, simultaneously, these photos come out? That timing is a little too perfect. To break out in the public consciousness the same time you get your professional career into gear; well, that sounds exactly like Paris Hilton's sex tape leaking weeks before the debut of The Simple Life.
These days, athletes are celebrities. They show up on gossip sites. They get endorsement deals completely unrelated to their athletic talents. To make it in a world where TMZ Sports exists, you need to bump your Q rating. And what better way to cross over into mainstream awareness than leaking nude photos of yourself?
Now, any d-lister without talent but with dreams of making it big has to release a sex tape. Sometimes it works (Kim Kardashian), sometimes it doesn't (Chyna). George Hill and Visanthe Shiancoe are d-listers of professional sports, and exposing themselves to the world have increased their visibility.
We won't be getting athlete sex tapes. For all the homoeroticism in the sports world, most of us don't really want that. But dong pics are innocuous, and we're all a little curious about these large men who are so much better than us in every way.
Are we heading for a world in which athletes intentionally put these photos of themselves out there? Not necessarily. But now that everyone has camera phones, and there's a market for these types of things, and the precedent has already been set, there's going to be more and more. And athletes, if they're smart, won't try to fight it.