There comes a moment every basketball player dreads. It takes place on the court with thousands of spectators present. It is a hollow sensation of not being good enough to match skills with those of your opponents. For the weak-willed, this feeling can come at any time.
For me, I sense it only when an injury strikes me low… and this happened in our recent preseasoning match against the Phoenix Suns. While it was good to see Channing Frye again, my back gave me the pains. I felt confidence drain from my frame, and the notion of surrender appeared like an unwelcome wraith at courtside.
As I wondered whether I could continue, Amare Stoudemire enjoyed a ferocious dunk. It was quite well-done, but the effect was ruined when Stoudemire, smugly gave me a sneer and a jeer.
Few players endear themselves less with me and my mates than this Sun. His manners are as uncouth as his skills are prodigious. And his judgment! In order to prepare for being team captain, Stoudemire consulted the Wikipedia entry on “Leadership.” (His research left no stone turned!)
There was little chance I’d let this injury-prone talker of trash escape unscathed. Luckily, my Muse gave me inspiration: “Hold your wagging tongue,” I stated. “This rookie [gesturing to Dante Cunningham] has already played more games than you engaged in last year!” While our bench chuckled, Amare merely shook his head and ran off. (Perhaps he needed to consult the Wikipedia entry for “Snappy Comebacks”?)
Oh, my melancholy lifts, but chortling is not good for my back! Time to shift to the couch.