The opening game of the 2016 NBA Finals has taught the world two important lessons.
Curry + James + NBA Finals = The Ultimate Display of Human Potential
First, the display of raw, acrobatic and uncanny athleticism demonstrated by players on both teams provides clear evidence that human potential is evolving.
The experience of watching Lebron James and company on one side and Stephen Curry and company on the other is the equivalent of watching an upgraded superhero movie in which two opposing armies keep one-upping each other with even more unbelievable abilities.
The show of talent is beyond comprehension. Michael Jordan is the only player who comes to mind in terms of one human having the capability to bend reality and momentum his way.
Growing up a Knicks fan, I endured countless torture sessions watching Jordan toy with the Knicks. His hang time seemed endless and impossible (see it here on YouTube.) Now that I’m removed from the Knicks on an emotional level because of so many consecutive sucky seasons, I’m able to marvel at Jordan’s talent without confusion and pain.
It seemed like everyone in Game One was pulling these moves. I used to break my neck trying to mimic Jordan’s Air Reverse Layup. I would convince myself that because my father was once a star on his Brooklyn College Basketball team, I had it in me to float above the basket.
Truth be told, even though Jordan was a nemesis of sorts, I still loved to borrow his glory by “being like Mike.”
Let’s just say that emulating Jordan came at a small price. Thank God for the patch of grass behind the basket on my driveway. Inevitably, I would wipe out hard but I was proud that I could pump the basketball in the air. (Forget about whether or not the rock landed anywhere near the net. I was lucky if I got four inches off the ground.)
It didn’t matter though. I was Air Jordan…even as I hopped my neighbor’s fence to retrieve the basketball.
Watching the Warriors do battle with the Cavaliers brought me pure pleasure, not because I’m not attached to either team, but because the athleticism put on display is a testament to what we can accomplish when we work hard at something we love.
Although Lebron James and Stephen Curry only had brief flashes of brilliance tonight compared to their baseline selves(Curry only scored 11 points and James had 23), these larger-than-life performers remind us that we’re ALL capable of brilliance if we make a commitment.
Humans are becoming something different. Only a lack of discipline can stand in our way.
In modern times the abuse of personal technology comes to mind as something that can prevent us from reaching our personal potential.
Put bluntly, if you can’t stop checking your likes on Facebook and Instagram, if you can’t stop checking your email, if you can’t put down your Playstation controller after two hours of fun, you will never reach your potential.
You have great powers. Commit to what you love doing and grow your skills. Or at least commit to discovering what you love, what your true calling is.
The Family Jewels Should Not Factor Into an NBA Game
Second, there really, truly is a horrible and disturbing trend in the NBA of punching each other in the nuts.
What’s up with this and why does it seem like this is a new thing?
Don’t the laws of human decency apply to professional sports?
Is it because teams will now do whatever it takes to win?
NBA players: Please stop hitting below the belt. It really takes away the fun of watching you play.
I will also throw in MLB pitchers who send batters a message by throwing behind them – or actually hitting them. WTF? That should never be allowed. Someone is going to get really hurt from that. I mean, really hurt, especially when flamethrowers are sending 100 mph baseballs at a stationary batter.
Bad behavior among players in professional sports sends a message to our nation’s youth that it’s ok to treat people in the worst way possible if you don’t like them or if you hold a grudge. It normalizes violence and limits the potential of our youth.
Thank you Cavs and Warriors for reminding the world how greatness is growing even greater, and for the enjoyment of great basketball minus the questionable hit below the belt.
Feel free to comment below. I’d love to hear your thoughts about my thoughts, and about Game One overall.