Thursday, November 15, 2007

People I Actually Love # 1

When I was ten years old, basketball was the center of my universe. Michael Jordan was king, Charles Barkley was in shape and didn't talk as much, Space Jam was the greatest movie ever made (Bill Murray and Muggsy Bogues together?!), Charles Oakley was my hero and I dreamed that one day, I would be the first Pacific Islander drafted into the NBA.

This never happened (nor did my dream to be the fifth member of Boyz II Men) but I grew to love the lovable loserness of my Knicks. They played hard D, they had a former grocery store stock boy blow their best opportunity for a title in over thirty years, and yet somehow everything in the world was still okay.

Then a miracle happened. No, not just a miracle; 'miracle' is too simple a word to use in this instance, more like "euphoric metaphysical transformation into complete and utter awesomeness." And his name was Jeff Van Gundy.

Van Gundy never won any titles, never brought the Knicks any closer than a lopsided defeat in the '99 Finals to a dynastic-pre-Longoria-San Antonio Spurs squad, but he had with him something that the current era of blue and orange ballers have yet to account for:cf balls. Big, bountiful, bruised and battered, but bleeding blue and orange balls.

Someone with the balls to actually ditch an Ivy League school to go to a shittier lower level college just for more playing time.

Need someone to run into an on-court altercation among overpaid gargantuan athletes? He's you're man.

Someone needs to get accidentally punched by their own starting center by getting caught in another prissy sideline bitch slap? Any takers? Oh too late, JVG just beat you to it.

Want someone to smile and be delightfully encouraging and positive? Eh... JVG's only one man now. Oh wait...

With all this current flood of apathy that continues to metastisize and permeate everything and anything involving the Knicks, it's good to look back on their last period of glory. Okay, so we didn't win championships, a slick haired Armani suit clad coach, a historic team of Hall of Famers with prospective Presidential candidates...but JVG brought with him balls. Big ones.

Big ups to my all-time favorite coach, NBA personality and all around decent human being.

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