Post Date: 03/22/2011

L.A. Clippers: The Best Sports Story Never Told

Submitted by Chris J The Genius on March 19, 2011 – 11:23 am

“It costs too much to keep you alive and we’re not willing to pay for it.”

Those cold, harsh words (or at least something to that effect) were told to former NBA coach Kim Hughes by L.A. Clippers upper management. Hughes was suffering from prostate cancer at the time, about seven years ago, and needed an operation to save his life.

From what we already know about the world of professional sports, the people involved (owners, coaches, players, etc.) can be very arrogant and self-centered. Instead, a few Clippers players chose to handle it, right then and  there.

The operation, which had a price tag of about $70,000, was picked up by Elton Brand, Corey Maggete, Chris Kaman, and Marko Jaric. Please take note: They didn’t try to “raise” the money by lending their time or their talent. They simply reached into their pockets or bank accounts and came up with the money  (which is really chump change for these guys—and the coaches for that matter when you consider the size or their contracts—anyway).

We can talk about how selfish players are on the court, or how they lack the type of work ethic which matches the big numbers of their paychecks, but it’s nice to know that when your life is literally on the line, you can count on your team.

Too often in professional sports (and life in general), we allow love of what we do to override the support we show from one another. Here’s an example where the home team got it right. Not only did they get the actual monetary part right, but the way they handled it shows them to be a classy cast full of character. Here are Hughes’s thoughts.

“Those guys saved my life. They paid the whole medical bill. It was like $70,000 or more. It wasn’t cheap. It showed you what classy people they are. They didn’t want me talking about it; they didn’t want the recognition because they simply felt it was the right thing to do.”

Hughes has not stopped thanking the players when he sees them, something player Corey Maggette pointed out.

“Kim thanks me every time he sees me; he does that every single time. I’ve said to him, ‘Kim, come on. You don’t have to do that. You’re good.’”

Of course, Hughes is good—thanks to four players who truly understand the meaning of the word team.




Post Date: 03/03/2011

Have Men Lost Their Place In Society?

Submitted by Chris J The Genius on March 3, 2011 – 9:40 am


“A good man’s hard to find, that’s one of y’all favorite lines.” – Bobby Valentino

Ask statisticians, sociologists, and women about relationships and you’ll find one thing in common. It’s taking longer and longer for young bachelors to become “grown ass men.” In fact, many of these people would argue that young men (more specifically, men in their 20s) are caught in limbo, a sort of no-man’s land between adolescence and adulthood.

What are the reasons for this shift from the well-defined man’s man of yesteryear and the twenty-something of the present who needs everything short of a babysitter ?

For one, there is a totally different job market out there. Technical skills are not nearly as sought as they once were, so there is a rush to graduate school for specialized training in the most valuable disciplines. To put it simply, it takes a lot longer to find that career path than it used to. The lack of job security may be contributing to the lack of willingness to settle down or commit. Furthermore, ladies are more likely to get college degrees, graduate degrees, and high-earning jobs than their male counterparts as they seem to show more drive and ambition than ever before.

It should also be considered there is quite a large dating pool out there for today’s bachelor. To put it simply, many of us just don’t seem to be ready to banish away all of the potential hook-ups. When moving up the corporate ladder today means exhibiting more flexibility and mobility than ever before for both sexes, we seem to realize we no longer have to give up the practice of frolicking with frequency, either.

Outside of the economy and job market, men have—in many ways—become nearly obsolete in society, or so it seems. Single mothers have become infamous for raising children without the help of unwilling men who abandon their responsibilities. Men are no longer even needed to procreate. Single women who want children can take a trip to the clinic and be mothers all on their own.

Finally, men don’t seem to want to grow up and be men because, well, they don’t have to. Their relationship prospects don’t seem to require it, so they choose not to. Today’s woman doesn’t need the mature adult who is ready for marriage and fatherhood, so many of us no longer offer that option. For most men (especially bachelors), attracting women is the primary motivating force behind many of the decisions we make. If this can be executed without half of the work it used to take, most won’t bother to go any further. Here is comedian Dave Chappelle‘s hilarious, yet poignant take on the subject.

For the longest time, our roles as men in society were well-defined. A man was the provider and protector of the family, period. Nowadays, these definitions of manhood are literally vanishing, giving way to the more indecisive and immature recent college graduate who still lives like a college student and retains the same mentality.

While we may lack the same material and sociological motivations men once had, we must still recognize the inherent honor in propriety, maturity, and responsibility. No matter how much things have changed, at some point we still have to become men and put away childish things.