Tuesday, February 12, 2008

I Wish I Were......

Imagine one day you wake up and all of a sudden you are 7’1” and listed as 280. You are coming out of high school and have never played organized ball before. You simply just excite people with your size and gifted athletic ability on the playgrounds just messing around with your boys. Then a local school Florida A&M takes notice of you and decides they want you to suit up. Nice a scholarship and you never played high school ball, it’s good to be this big isn’t it?

Then since you are 7’1” and can dribble between your legs as well as block shots, you get drafted in the second round of the 1998 NBA Draft. You are now playing for one of the best teams in the league (at the time) the Sacramento Kings sounds great right? However, reality sets in and you realize that they already have Vlade Divac, Chris Webber, Corliss Williamson, and Lawrence Funderburke (and Oliver Miller haha he was on the team but I'm just kidding) so you are not going to be doing much but sit on the bench. Since clapping your hands and being a cheerleader bores you, you decide you don’t care to work out or practice. Heck you are still getting paid right? Then to no ones surprise the Kings cut you, after only playing in a few games (rumor has it you were handed a black garbage bag to clean out your locker, OUCH).

So after collecting a couple of checks from the NBA (not millions but pretty good for the average American) you are in need of a job so you try out for the Harlem Globetrotters. You make it of course after all you have played in the NBA. Why the hell not play for the Globetrotters? You’re 7’1 what else can you do but play basketball. While “playing” for the Globetrotters you are recorded as dunking on an 11'4” basket. This helps you develop enough buzz to sign with a real team in Montenegro. Yeah it’s Montenegro but at least you are playing real organized ball again. You end up playing only 10 games and average 12.1 points and 6.1 rebounds per game. This is apparently good enough to land you a try out with the Seattle Supersonics.

So guess what you made the team, and are back playing for a REAL league (no disrespect to anybody who played or plays in Montenegro but Montenegro is Montenegro). Now, you’ve signed a contract and you are back in the NBA and you no longer have to “struggle” financially. So you celebrate a little and start eating a lot and just sit back and enjoy life once again. You are constantly on your brand new leather couch playing video games and watching movies instead of practicing. You end up getting the starting nod but you are quickly tagged as a lazy player who commits too many fouls, you are sent to the bench. Well what did you expect if you don’t work out? As Walt “Clyde” Frazier always says, “When players are tired, they play defense with their hands and not their feet” this obviously leads to frequent foul calls which ultimately reduces your minutes. What’s the big deal anyway? If you are sitting on the bench at least you are in the United States and getting great checks.

Then after three years in Seattle you earn another rep (on top of lazy and out of shape) the dreaded rep of selfishness. You are constantly called out by then Sonic Coach Nate McMillan for only caring about yourself. Then after a game you are asked the question of what you think about McMillan’s criticism you respond with, “I don’t know what he’s talking about, I just worry about (your name here).” Hmmmmmm.

Now it’s your contract year and your agent advises you that, ‘If you work out, play well and act like you really care some sucker out there will give you a huuuuge deal, I’m talking millions upon millions!!! Come on you’re 7’1”!!! Joe Pryzbilla got $3.35 Million over 2 years and you are ten times more talented then Joel Pryzbilla!!’ (This is not an actual quote).

Then you hit the gym, motivated more then ever by dollar signs. How can anybody blame you considering what you have gone through over the past couple of years? Then you end up playing real well and turn your career around in that one season. To top it off you play amazing in the playoffs better then ever before and it is against your former team the Kings. In game two you go for 19 pts, 9 rbs and a block. In game 3 you go for 22, 9 and a block!!! Then comes game 4 and you rack up 17 pts, 8 rbs and 4 blocks!!! CHA-CHING!!! This helps the Sonics beat your former team the Sacramento Kings 4 games to 1. CHA-CHING!!! So after the clinching victory you grab a garbage bag, wrap it around your neck like a cape and run around mocking the Kings. Who cares if we lost in the second round to the Spurs, life is great and you’re about to get a real deal NBA contract. I’m talking millions upon millions of dollars.

Now who wants to be that “sucker” that buys into a 30 year old having a breakout season?!?!? Hopefully it happens I mean you played amazing in the spotlight why can’t you get a deal? You are definitely deserving of a huge guaranteed contract, right? Then your agent sends you a text message saying, “How does $5.8 million a year for 5 years playing in New York sound?” (This is not an actual quote) You then jump up in the air and yelp out a big “YABA DABA DOOOOO!!!” because you are now financially secure now for the rest of your life with this guaranteed money…..NOW you have truly made it. So you go and sign that contract immediately before Isiah realizes what he is doing. Now it’s time to really drown yourself in the kind of comfortable furniture millionaire’s use. Psh why would I waste my time getting in shape for the Knicks? This team is horrible. Have you caught on? I am talking about Jerome James.

Now I ask you this, do you wish you were Jerome James? I know I sure as hell would love to be him. So now that James is back from whatever “surgery” he had on his “foot” you should have no reason to boo him. After all he is just living a dream and he beat the system. Is it his fault the system is flawed? He treats the NBA like a job not a sport. Why can’t players treat it like that if the Owners and front office executives treat it that way?

Guaranteed contracts are ruining the NBA and Major League Baseball. Guess what sport doesn’t have guaranteed contracts, the most popular and best run league in American sports……the NFL. So from now on please don’t blame Jerome for going about his business the way he did. You can’t hate on him because he signed a contract that gives him guaranteed millions. Hate on the sucker Isiah Thomas.

James is absolutely the worst free agent signing in NBA history don’t get me wrong there is no doubt about that. But at least he is going to be known for something right. Look at Bill Buckner he has accepted being known for having a ball go between his legs and he embraces interviews now instead of running from them. Jerome has a legacy whether you like it or not. I’m sure he doesn’t care what he is known for or what his critics say. If I were Jerome James my life motto would be (taken from the late Stack Bundles) “Haters call me a lot of names but never call me broke.”


Anonymous Joe said...

hahaha great stuff Alex I'd love to be Jerome James just for a day.

2/12/2008 3:34 PM  
Anonymous Smams said...

Secrue i wanna b like mike, I wanna b like james, Jerome James that is

4/28/2008 12:35 AM  

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