18 June 2008


"Hi, my name is Jim ... and I am an addict." That is the standard way to introduce yourself at meetings of twelve step programs. And there was a time that I could've used the line. I was addicted to watching basketball on television. Literally any game would do - University of Akron v. Cal Poly - San Luis Obisbo starting at midnight on the east coast? Great; even though I know nothing about either team or either school I'd be watching. In Rochester between mid-October and June you can usually watch multiple games each night. So, about a decade ago I quit cold turkey. I now have no television.

The source of this addition lies in my childhood. I grew up in Massachusetts during a period when the relevant local teams in other sports were uniformly terrible - we are talking the Red Sox, the Patriots and, dimly since hockey was not an acceptable sport, the Bruins. There were no real big-time University teams in the region at the time. And while my home town was close to NYC, the very thought of routing for the Yankees, Mets, Giants, Jets or whatever was simply beyond the pale. So, I was a Celtics fan though and through. Basketball became the only real sport. Like party identification in politics, my fan status lasted into adulthood. I routed for the Celtics and gradually began to watch all sorts of games. (It was easy because in graduate school I lived in Michael Jordon's Chicago and had good friends who were Carolina fans.)

For a decade, though, I've watched basketball only in passing. I couldn't tell you which teams, College or Pro, were any good. That includes this past year, even though I knew the Celtics have been dramatically revitalized. Last night the Celtics won their 17th N.B.A. title. And, deliciously, they did so by beating the tar out of the loathsome Los Angeles Lakers! I didn't watch the game, but today I feel withdrawal symptoms again!



Anonymous Anonymous said...

It was a beautiful game, and a superb playoffs and finals! The Celtics pulled off one of the most dramatic comebacks in NBA history. To think, just a season ago, The Boston C's was one of the worst franchises in the NBA. The addition of Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett, though, coupled with an entire overhaul of their methodology -- defense, defense, defense -- transformed this team beyond anyone's wildest expectations. This is the stuff legends are made of!

Personally, I found this team's journey incredibly inspiring. They remind me that with focus, passion, and a relentless work ethic, we can radically transform ourselves. Congratulations Boston Celtics: 2008 NBA Champions!

P.S. -- If it's not obvious, I'm an NBA addict, myself! :)

P.P.S. -- What a pleasure it is to see the loathsome, arrogant, Kobe Bryant, completely shut down by Celtic's defense!

18 June, 2008 07:39  
Blogger Stan B. said...

I'm not particularly a Celts fan, but it was a joy watching- and glad they won!

18 June, 2008 13:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! celtics reall ruled the basketball court this time, im so late in news. cause of my work man! thanks for the info.

19 June, 2008 07:42  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stay strong. There's a reason why you quit the first time.

19 June, 2008 17:28  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Go Celtics

An avid basketball fan myself, watching the championship return to Boston was a beauty to behold.

Nothing is better than watching a team struggle for years but remain poised and over time acquire, hone and nurture young talents into champions.

Over the last few years the Celtics have always played inspired basketball despite losing a lot. They never gave up on their young players even when they slipped, and by making excellent use of the draft the organization has molded a team of homegrown, adversity tested, young and fun-to-watch players who learned from their mistakes and struggles how to win it all.

This is how champions are made.

Congratulations Boston!

19 June, 2008 19:51  

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