BYU Wins Holy War

BYU Wins Holy War
George, like Collie and Harline before him, is now still open!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Utah Jazz: Chummy Before and After Games

I was upset, as a Jazz fan, after watching the Jazz bring a F- effort in the first quarter of the game against the Hornets, and then try to play catch up for the rest of the game. Not at the Jazz for their seeming lack of effort in the first twelve minutes, I was upset at the way they exited the court after the game. Everyone was hugging and laughing with members of the Hornets. There were smiles all around. No anger over getting their butts kick for 48 minutes, nope just standing around talking like they were at a wedding reception.

When did the love fest start in the NBA? After every game players will exchange man-hugs at mid court, pat each other on the butt, and ask about the other's plans after the game. (Last night you could hear a little of Paul and Deron's conversation in which they were planning on eating after the game.) Not to say there shouldn't be good sportsmanship during the game, but aren't they taking this a little to far?

You would never see these post game greetings during the Jordan era of basketball. The teams actually cared about what the score was after the game. Name a time you saw Karl Malone or John Stockton give a person from the other team a hug after a game? Charles, Stockton and Malone were buddy-buddy during the era, but you didn't see Charles sticking around to hug them after Stockton hit the shot in the Western Conference Finals. Teams would barely touch hands before a game began in the past, and that was only if someone didn't punch a guy out before the tip. Now some players need to get a room with the affection they are dealing out before tip off.

The Spurs are a good example of a team that knows what they are playing for. When the buzzer sounds they aren't looking for people to hug. They are heading to the locker room to prepare for the next game.

What happened to the players that lived by having a HUGE chip on their shoulder. Harpring still has it. Matt wasn't sticking around speaking to anyone after last nights game, or any other game for that matter. Sloan emits it. The awkwardness that occurs when a player wants to man-hug Sloan after a game is priceless. (If you ever see it, it really is gold) Okur shows his emotions on his sleeve, and with the exception of Detroit, he doesn't want to talk to anyone after any games. Those are competitors. Boozer and Deron had that competitive fire in them during the playoffs last year. They don't have it right now. In fairness to them the season is a marathon, and only legends really bring their game every night.

It seems that Shaq summed up the problem with the Jazz, "You don't win championships in December." It is sad to see that mentality in the way the Jazz are playing. This lack of competitive heart from the Jazz star players is holding back the team. You can see they want to save it for the playoffs; however, if they don't show the heart now they will be on the outside looking in come April.

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