The Chosen One vs. The Inferior One (Part 1)
Talking basketball can be a very touchy subject. At times, actually almost every time, talking hoops becomes the equivalent of talking hip-hop, it just never seems to work out. Hip-hop discussions always seem to turn into something more, something personal. It never seems to fail, and with basketball fans, it’s the same old story. Basketball is a sport that requires a lot of rhythm, hand-eye coordination, and an ability to insert a level of smoothness on the court. Sure, you don’t have to be smooth to be a decent player, but all the best ones always are. Or, at least the most fun ones to watch, that is. The same can be said for hip-hop. Ma$e might not have been the best rapper of all-time, but damn was that man was smooth on the microphone.
So, as many of these discussions turned into major arguments throughout the years, guess what? I still love to talk hoops, and hip-hop. The competition is what makes it so great, and recently, one of these basketball conversations took place between a friend and I after work one evening. It started out as they usually do, with us trading opinions back and forth, shedding light on the current state of the NBA. As the conversation progressed, however, it took on a whole new direction. This was a conversation that has had its writing on the wall for a couple years now but finally needed to come to light. My friend and I were pretty blown away by the way we had worded these next statements, but here it goes.
LeBron James has spent his entire basketball and NBA career trying to vindicate his once-in-a-lifetime basketball abilities to his fans, haters, teammates, coaches, and media. On the cover of Sports Illustrated at the age of 17, the domino effect started at an early age for King James as he had an “NBA body” at the age of 18.
Stephen Curry? Well, he’s spent his entire basketball and NBA career trying to prove everyone wrong. According to his NBA draft report, Curry was, “far below NBA standard in regard to explosiveness and athleticism. He’s not a natural point guard that an NBA team can rely on to run a team.” (www.nbadraft.net)
Puts things into perspective, doesn’t it? Is it human nature for the fans to crave someone like Curry, an “undersized guard” who didn’t have the defensive ability or strength to make it in the NBA? How about LeBron? The world couldn’t get enough of this hoops prodigy out of high school and the opportunity he had to turn the most failing sports city of all-time into the next NBA dynasty. The Cleveland Cavaliers were finally going to win that NBA title, and then some, and then some. Not one, not two, not three…
However, we all know what happened next. Looking back, it never really felt like LeBron became that next beloved superstar athlete. Or, did The Decision just cloud the entire picture? Maybe my Ohio bias is taking over here after he left Cleveland to take his talents to South Beach, but after losing that dreadful series to the Celtics, he never seemed to get over that hump. Was the pressure just too much to handle? Had the team with one of the best records in NBA history imploded? I could discuss this until I’m blue in the face, but something just seemed off. And then, The Decision happened, and the NBA would never be the same again:
To Be Continued….