Thanks to either an apocalyptic meltdown or a resurrection reminiscent of Lazarus (I prefer meltdown, but, eh, to each its own), the Warriors will play the Cavs tonight in a redux of last year’s mediocre NBA Finals.
Frankly, I don’t care who wins. I can easily tolerate a “Greatest team in the history of the NBA” narrative the same way I can a “Prodigal son returns home to provide a championship to a desperate fanbase.” I just want to see some competitive basketball and a few entertaining post-bucket celebrations. (Staredowns, stomps, shimmying, all the shit is welcome.)
But one thing that’s making the fuzz beneath my balls crinkle is the growing number of casual basketball fans who are hoping for Golden State’s demise because they believe Stephen Curry has turned into a cocky piece of shit.
Curry used to be humble, nah mean? Like, he won MVP and got a ‘ship and now he all holier than thou, and disrespectful and what not. I don’t like that shit!
This is the dumbest shit that I’ve heard since DC fanboys tried to convince me “Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice” was cinematically more realistic than “Captain America: Civil War.” (It’s not. Sit yo’ salty ass down somewhere with that nonsense.)
You mean to tell me that this light-skinned, son of a professional basketball-playing father and a collegiate star-athlete mother (and she fine), husband to a modelesque wife (I don’t care what you say bruh, she fine too), who has his own signature shoe, and is a starting guard in the NBA, suddenly became arrogant between last year’s championship and now? NO. That’s idiotic.
Curry has been cocky since the day he was born. While you were busy snacking on pasteurized cheese products, Steph was devouring healthy portions of Foie gras. His childhood room was most likely a combination of Richy Rich meets Theo Huxtable. He was playing one-on-one with NBA ballers while you were throwing rubber rec balls at a makeshift hoop constructed with milk crates and duct tape. He’s been cocky for awhile now.
I know we’ve become accustomed to this lovely notion that Curry is just a humble, God-fearing, family man who’s strength comes from those around him, some of which is probably true. But it’s also the feel-good fictive that the NBA wants you to devour. It sells tickets and moves merchandise from stockroom shelves to the confines of your living room.
Beneath this veneer there also exists a self-absorbed, endogenous, “ball is life” assassin. And that’s not necessarily a terrible thing. You can be cocky and decent at the same damn time. Just as you can be unpretentious and a dick, at the same damn time. It can happen.
ALL PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES ARE COCKY, SOMEWHAT NARCISSISTIC HUMAN BEINGS. Every last one of them. Because sometimes it’s necessary.
Becoming a specimen that is paid to perform at a supremely elite-level is hard as fuck. While most have been gifted with some fortuitous physical traits (like being seven feet tall), and blind luck (like being the seed of a professional athlete), it’s still a steep road to trek. (What up doe Marcus Jordan?!)
Thus, if you don’t have some belief that all that is good and pure in the entire world revolves around your undeniable greatness, you will fail. (BELIEVE IN YO’SELF DAMMIT!)
I’m not referring to confidence. That’s for regular folks. It’s reserved for mere mortals who sort through data sets, prepare lesson plans (I love teachers), or muster up the courage to ask an attractive chick at Buffalo Wild Wings for their number.
What I’m talking about a supreme aura created with the knowledge that you can alter the fabric of the entire universe.
It’s what drives some of the best athletes to devote countless hours and an inordinate amount of energy to their craft. Their professional existence is centered on the notion that an entire organization’s success will be determined by their performance.
If you’re bothered by Wardell Jr.’s brash celebratory outbursts –like staring into someone’s soul after obliterating their ankles or turning up court after shooting an improbable 3-pointer before the ball hits the bottom of the net – get over yourself. J.R. Smith practically catches the Holy Ghost every time he nails a shot despite having none of the accolades or superlatives currently in Curry’s possession.
Professional athletes are paid to entertain, excite, and do crazy-difficult shit – like hit 35-foot, game-winning bombs with ease. Listen, you can root for, or against, whoever you want, it’s your prerogative. There are a myriad of reasons to not like the Warriors. (They win too much, they make shit look fun, they’re not your team, pick one.) But don’t hate on someone because they’re not the person you want them to be. That’s fucking stupid.