"...went from most hated to the champion God flow, I guess that's a feeling only me and Lebron know..."
What defines greatness?
Numbers? Championships? Top 10 lists? Awards?
Greatness is often misunderstood. Most of the time, we fail to realize greatness when it is right in front of us. Instead, we often spend the most of our time criticizing and critiquing it. Failing to recognize it, often we are confused by its actions in the present time.
This is what I see happening to Lebron James. Currently, James is the best basketball player on the planet and one of the best athletes in the world. How, though, do people continue to blast him? A two time NBA champion and Finals MVP, plus 4 time League MVP, Lebron has what most people would consider a sub-par resume.
Let that sink in. Four time League MVP. and back-to-back Finals wins and Finals MVP, and that is sub-par.
When you compare this to Bill Russell or Michael Jordan, of course this is sub par. But guess what guys, we don't HAVE to compare LBJ to MJ or Bill. Reason being, Lebron is his OWN player. Skill set wise, he isn't Michael. He is more Magic But that just isn't enough to compare. We HAVE to compare him to Michael, don't we?
Hatred. Disdain. Disrespect. This all stems from one night: The Decision.
A stunt to make money for The Boys and Girls club, Lebron's heart was in the right place. However, the spectacle of the hour long special is what drives people away. Whether they call it classless or a grab at the spotlight, they find any way to tear him down. We always ignore the facets of his basketball game to focus on the negative. He could do things that other players, like an Andre Johnson, has done such as purchasing toys for kids around the holidays. Thing is, there are people who will still say that he hasn't done enough. That he is doing this just for the spotlight.
When is enough, enough?
The College Dropout. Late Registration. Graduation. 808s and Heartbreaks. My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. The Throne. Yeezus.
All of these could be used to describe Kanye (Con-Yay) West. Most, however, remember him from his incident with Taylor Swift at the MTV VMA's which made her a household name to the hip hop community. But truth is, Kanye is much more beyond that. He is considered by many a musical genius and a visionary in music. Having been a fan of his music since his first disc was dropped, I have seen the evolution of his music. A part of the hatred for Kanye can be traced back to the MTV incident.
Ignore the fact that he once wrote a song called "Jesus Walks" in which he calls out pop radio for not playing songs with messages, or "Roses," which is about taking a dying family member flowers only to be accosted by nurses and doctors for autographs and pictures. We instead focus on a perceived narcissism. Perceived because we see him in pictures on magazine covers, on the internet or the subject of stories on sites such as World Star Hip Hop. He is brash, we all know that. Flamboyant as well, but that comes with the territory of being a major superstar.
We ignore the fact that he founded the Kanye West Foundation to battle rising drop out rates and illiteracy. He also partners with MTV to help soldiers who battle PTSD and debt on their return home. He also appeared in many PSAs for Strong American Schools. His giving back to the communities that helped shape him go overlooked.
Funny how both of these gentlemen cannot win. It seems that no matter what they do, they will never do enough for the naysayers who continue to beat their image into the ground. It doesn't matter if they save a dog from a house fire, rescue a kitten from a tree, help an old woman cross the street or buy food to feed 400.
It has been quite a while since I have written to you. A lot has been going on. Today we learned that Vinny Del Negro was let go. The Clippers have set a record in the last two seasons for wins in franchise history. The move is a bit of an over reaction in my opinion. What gets me is that Chris Paul is now a free agent. So basically, he has his choice of who will coach he and Blake from here going forward.
We also learned that Houston has won the Super Bowl bid for SB LI (51). Helloooooooo Texas! The city of Houston has earned this one. With winning the right to host, the entire state wins at this one. There are reports that there will be a full on festival for 10 days before the actual game. People will be invited over for the festivities from all over Texas and Mexico making this international.
Also, The Charlotte Hornets are OFFICIALLY BACK! I think I may wind up being a new fan all over again. Someone call Mugsy Bouges and Grandmama!!
Til the next time friends, I will try to make this a more frequent thing.
The whirlwind that has been the week following Wrestlemania on the radio station has been crazy. For the first time since doing the radio show I can honestly say I am star struck. This week we interviewed one Hulk Hogan.
Since I can remember, I would turn the TV on and watch WWF and later WCW to try and catch Hulk on TV. It was as a child that I would say my prayers and convince myself that I absolutely NEEDED to get the vitamins that Hulk said to. Essentially he could do no wrong. From the times of feuding with Randy Savage as The MegaPowers collided or later, joining the n.W.o. If Hulk Hogan did it, I had to be a part of it in some way, shape, form or fashion.
In the heyday of the Monday Night Wars, Hogan helped lead the faction to war against his former employer. The WWF and Vince McMahon helped shaped the future that became professional wrestling, but Hulk Hogan took it to the forefront with his role in Rocky 3 leading the way. Whether you are a pro wrestling fan or not, you have been a fan in some way.
TNA Impact wrestling has come to Corpus Christi the week this blog is going up. With this, I was able to meet Hulk. But in the weeks leading up to it, I was able to meet Hernandez and Chavo Guerrero, Jr. Interviewing Hulk. SoCal Val basically stole my heart. This week, Wrestling Week as I have dubbed it, has been nothing short of a dream come true.
Being a super fan has its perks. Few of them can live up to the perk that one Mike Hart experienced a few years ago. The premier defender on the Gonzaga Bulldogs has seen his stock and notoriety rise in recent months. Hart has gone from the student section in The Kennel to starter on the Nations #1 team.
During Senior Night at The McCarthy Athletic Center in Spokane, Hart spoke post game and pointed up to the top of The New Kennel. "I started up there." Nothing could be more true. The dorm mate of former basketball player Andy Poling, Hart found his way into gym rat pickup games. Through these games he earned himself a spot as a walk-on at open try outs. Thing is, Hart is not just a normal Joe off the streets. A two time letter winner at Jesuit HS in Portland, Hart was voted Most Valuable Player and Best Defensive Player among his peers.
His tenacity has been rewarded. Mike Hart began his career as a walk on with Gonzaga. Since then, he has been rewarded by his hard work and play with a scholarship. This, his senior year, he has become a starter. Seen as the clean up guy, Hart battles for every rebound and steal and his name is always being called in clutch situations. Only having turned the ball over 8 times this year, he is steady handed. He is the glue that holds this team together.
After watching the year he has had, I guess you really cannot win without Hart.
#1 Gonzaga takes on Southern on Thursday, 3:10 central time on TBS.
While watching the Sprite Slam Dunk contest I couldn't help but notice how much these guys had never been noticed. Gerald Green and James Flight White were the two guys most people had heard of.
The other 4 members of this years field, Kenneth Faried, Terrence Ross, Jeremy Evans, Eric Bledsoe, are not bad players. The thing is, they are not great dunkers when you first think about it. The fact that some of these guys, all six, had to take 5-10 attempts just to make a dunk.
Gone are the days of Vince Carter, Michael Jordan, Dominique Wilkins, Spudd Webb and Sky Walker. We are now reduced to have a collection of guys who really have no business anywhere near All Star Weekend. The guys we are left with have less than 20 dunks in a half of a season.
Granted, some of the dunkers we enjoy seeing on fast breaks aren't the most creative of guys. Still, that doesn't take away from the fact that we could a pretty enjoyable contest if they would get off the high horse and put the pride aside.
Until then, i suppose we are stuck watching this and reliving the greatness that was...
For years, having watched the Steelers/Ravens rivalry develop, you have to have a sense of love and hate for some of these players. You get to watch, each time they play, some of the best defensive football players to ever lace them up and set foot on a football field. Troy. Suggs. Ed Reed. Harrison. Gnata. The names evoke a sense of respect and a bit of fear in most offensive players. But one name always stood out above the others.
Since the days of patrolling the field as a linebacker for the Miami Hurricanes, Lewis has been a leader. A two time All-American and a Freshman All-American at The U, Ray Lewis embodies what you want at the linebacker position. Foregoing his senior season, he entered the draft in 1996. Selected by the Baltimore Ravens with the 26th pick, he is the only member of their inaugural team still on the roster. In his first year, he earned All Rookie Team honors by recording 110 tackles, 15 for loss, 2.5 sacks, 6 pass deflections, and an INT for the season. This was just the start of things to come.
A string of 5 straight Pro Bowls was to come before an injury interrupted that streak. By the end of the 2012 season, Ray Lewis had earned 13 Pro Bowl selections.
The high point of his career came in the 2000 season. Riding high through the season led by a trio of linebackers in Ray Lewis, Peter Boulware and Jamie Sharper, the Ravens defense was one of the best in the history of football. They, at the time, were the only defense to ever hold opponents to under 1000 yards rushing in a 16 game season. They also broke the record of fewest points allowed in a single season (165) which was set by the 1985 Chicago Bears (187). Entering the Super Bowl in January of 2001, the Ravens were a 3 point favorite over the New York Giants. Led by NFL Defensive Player of the Year Ray Lewis, the NY Giant offense was held scoreless. Their lone touchdown was allowed on special teams, via a 97 yard kickoff return. This defense still remains the only defense in Super Bowl history to pitch a shut out.
That year, Ray Lewis won Super Bowl MVP, Defensive Player of the Year, Unanimous All Pro selection as well as being named to the Pro Bowl by recording 137 tackles in the regular season, 31 tackles, two interceptions, nine pass deflections, one fumble recovery and a touchdown in their four game run to the Super Bowl.
A 13 Time Pro Bowler, 7 time First Team All NFL, 3 Time Second Team All NFL, 2 Time Associated Press Defensive Player of the year, 2 Time NFL Alumni Linebacker of the year and a 2 Time Collegiate All American, Lewis embodied what you want in a football player. The intensity, leadership, pride, determination, and passion that he played with is something we may never see again. As his Hall of Fame worthy career comes to an end, we must ask ourselves, have we just witnessed the last games played by the Greatest Linebacker Of All Time?