This July 4th was a reminder of why sports are so stupid.
Another NBA basketball star decided to take his talents from the only place he has ever known and moved them across the country to a team that set the record for the most wins in a season and bested him in the playoffs.
It's another opportunity for people who write about sports, to tell the people who pay for everything in sports, how they should feel when a small minority of people who actually play a sport, decide where they will play said sport.
It's so stupid.
I read something when I was a kid that I have forced myself to remember...don't let a millionaire ruin your day. I'm a Cleveland native and I remember watching "The Decision." The narcissism of that event was something I found baffling. That's saying something since we as a sports obsessed society, for as long as I can remember, have been watching kids announce where they will play football or basketball in college.
Professional athletes are not everyday working Joes like you and me. I can't get up one day, decide I want to "get out of my comfort zone" and go chase "titles" in my industry. No one cares what my "legacy" in life will be other than friends and family, so please stop telling me if I was in Durant's position, I would do the same thing.
I'm not Durant. I average 4 points a pickup game while taking 75 shots. I get paid to raise money, not increase my WAR (I don't understand what this means either). If I wasn't consulting I wouldn't be able to live off the endorsements I get paid to endorse, because I don't get paid to endorse anything...because I am a working Joe (who's actually named Chris).
We had people arguing the merits/betrayal of Durant's decision. I think that's fine. It's funny and silly, but fine. Sports are emotional; let the fans have their moments of emotion. I have to chuckle when someone writes a story, like the one mentioned above, about how emotional it was for Durant to leave.
Really? If the emotion was ecstatic, then I agree. Durant should be ecstatic that he improved his chances of winning titles by joining the team he couldn't beat. But why would you tell anyone that they should praise the guy for being selfish? Is this something you would teach your children? No one understands the argument of looking out for yourself better than me, but I'm not a brand trying to sell you personalized socks.
So top telling me that he simply took a better job; one that any of us would have done. I'm good at my job, and like it very much. But I'm not hanging out in Hampton's for the a week, having Tom Brady come visit me then deciding where to work so people will remember me among the greatest because I won a lot of rings.
This is a simple point everyone should understand: Sports are not real life.
When I read these pedestrian arguments that multi-millionaire athletes approach life the same way you or I do I laugh. They play sports for entertainment. No matter how many free throws I can make, I'm never going to be 6'8" 250. These are truly gifted, talented people. Saying that, I'm not going to apologize for the place I think they have in society, and it's not one of great importance; and therefore one where I think fans should be free from lectures on how to feel.
Durant couldn't beat a team, so he joined them. That's the definition of a frontrunner. Now since we are talking about sports here, being a frontrunner isn't the worst thing in the world in my opinion. What is the worst thing is pontificating to fans who pay for stadiums, purchase license agreements for tickets, then buy said tickets, along with jerseys, TV packages, sneakers, hats, hot bogs, beers, popcorn, and numerous other stuff in support of being entertained.
Kevin Durant left. People are emotional. Hot takes are in full swing. Let's take a moment to remember that fans are the reason this stupidity is popular. The one and only reason. Let us pour out our feelings, like we do to our bank accounts cheering on the likes of players like Durant. Let's also take a note from the GM of the team Durant just left:
Presti isn't going to tell his fans how to feel. Sport Writers with Hot Takes should take notice.