Sunday, June 12, 2011
The Miami Hate
Make no mistake: I couldn't care less what anyone in America thinks of the Miami Heat. For me, the fact that they're almost universally, though still somewhat inexplicably, loathed is part of the fun at this stage. But I can be kind of an asshole.
Still, Bill Plaschke of the L.A. Times makes a really great point -- one that I know a lot of Miami Heat fans have pondered during this entire post-season run.
"Imagine a basketball team whose three biggest stars have sacrificed money and ego to assemble on one team for the sole intent of winning a championship.
Two of those stars' craving for a title was such that they left homes they loved and fans who loved them. The third star made an equally difficult move by stepping aside and welcoming them.
Imagine this collection of players then playing an entire season under a national microscope unmatched in the history of team sports. Every itch is documented, every scratch is scrutinized, every star is questioned about every public act, every day is another chance for them to embarrass or enrage.
But imagine they don't. They endure the media's perfect storm with uncommon dignity and grace. They don't publicly criticize others. They don't publicly fight among themselves. Off the court, they are a model of restraint. On the court, they are an example of unselfish determination, three guys trying to figure out a way to meld their three incredible talents for the good of this team.
Imagine this collection of stifled egos and textbook teammates growing together for nine months until they are within two victories of an NBA title.
And imagine all of America cheering against them.
This is the Miami Heat, and you hate the Heat, and I can't figure out why."
And that's before he gets into the reasons why the Mavericks maybe aren't so deserving of everyone's sudden endorsement, even if it is only by default.
The Los Angeles Times: It's Not Hard To Imagine the Heat as the Good Guys/6.11.11