I’ve got a real hard time with basketball.
All the rage in Boston today is over the Boston College-level point shaving to get a winning season again.trade. And I’m certainly excited for Boston to get him – devil knows the Celtics could use anything up to and including
But apparently, you can get one player in exchange for “five players and two draft picks” and still come out ahead on the deal.
This makes no sense to me. It doesn’t even read right. Imagine Bill Belichick trading eleven players and the second and third round draft picks in exchange for Carson Palmer. Imagine Billy Beane trading his first, second and third basemen for Tom Gorzelanny.
I know, I know, apples and oranges. But as I’ve mentioned elsewhere, I have a hard time with basketball because I don’t like the inordinate influence one player has on an entire team. It’s not about the billion-dollar superstar or the sneaker deal. It’s about teamwork! It’s about ball handling! It’s about the fundamentals! Gene Hackman doesn’t give a damn whether Jimmy plays or not!
The level of despair that Boston sports fans exuded after the Celtics drew fifth in the draft lottery reached, well, truly Bostonian proportions. At that point we were just waiting out next season – Paul Pierce listlessly dribbling down the court, waiting for the shot clock to expire before bouncing the ball off his shoe and weeping – until next season, when maybe the air-driven path of a Ping Pong ball would favor us again. Now, suddenly, with the addition of a guy from the Timberwolves (?!?) to our line-up, SI puts us at third in the East. “Instant contenders.” The hell?
I’d like to be proven wrong, mostly because I like the spirit that comes from living in a four sport city. And Kevin Garnett’s a nice enough guy – just look at him! – that I’ll have no problem rooting for him. But somebody engraved in my brain at an early age that it takes more than one man to win a championship, and I’ll always be skeptical of the exception.