Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Praising Quitters

(alternately titled I still hate Shaq)
Something that’s been getting to me and since the Lakers play the Suns tonight…
Ever since Shaq has been traded it seems like every commentator is talking about how good he looks and how focused and intense he is because, in the words of Doug Collins, “he’s been playing for championships for the last 10 or 11 years and to play on a team that’s lost 24 of 25 games is just discouraging” as if to give him an excuse for not having his traditional numbers or trying to be in shape or even not exaggerate his injuries which lead him to, as another commentator put it, “take months off.”
Isn’t he getting a major pass on all this? Shouldn’t he be criticized even a little for his last season or so in Miami, especially if in Phoenix he looks rejuvenated? Isn’t it the job of a professional to play hard each and every night even if your team happens to be losing? To do otherwise, wouldn’t that be considered quitting on your team? I wouldn’t think that professional sports is a place to work hard only win you’re winning. But maybe it’s just me and the fact that he gets the benefit of the doubt because he’s so friendly to the media. Either way though a job of a professional, especially one being paid 20 million dollars a year in the dying embers of his career is to at least try no matter the circumstance.

Oh and there’s always the drama that Shaq brings wherever he goes

(video via)

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