Saturday, September 09, 2006

Imagine the crap Stu Scott would say about him if he played today.

In a strange bit of symmetry, I find it fitting that on the day I post my first real blog entry, my all-time favorite athlete goes into the Hall of Fame. Everybody has that one guy that made you always try a little bit harder playing the 3...2...1...BUZZER! game in the driveway as a kid. For me, Dominique Wilkins was THE guy. In fact, as I got older I wore #21 throughout my entire basketball career because of Nique. Also, I just joined a co-ed soccer league with Mrs. Dar...guess my number. Anyway, the guy was amazing, and I never thought he got enough praise for 26,000 points and 9 all-star games. Here's a great column (albeit by the Simmons intern) about this very topic.

My point is now that I'm older I don't think it's possible for any athlete to inspire me that much seeing as I have to work, pay rent, etc. Priorities change, but it's funny how the loyalties you forge when you're young and impressionable stick with you down the road. For instance, I am still bitter that Michael Jordan won the '88 dunk contest just because it was being held in Chicago. His final dunk was a total sham. It was the second time in the contest he did the free-throw line dunk, and his foot was a foot over the line! Did not deserve a 50. Here's a cool recap of the whole thing, but note where MJ's foot is at the 1:54 mark.

Anyway, to sum up, the top spot in my sports conscience will always belong to Dominique Wilkins, and I'm thrilled to see him get into the Hall. Congrats as well to Charles Barkley and Joe Dumars. They hold similar places of reverence in my mind for being some of the best in the world during the period that I truly became a basketball nut.

Oh, way to go, Geno Auriemma too!


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