|I'm a huge KG/Timberwolves fan that currently lives just outside Detroit. So right now I'm in the midst of two different situations that outlines the hypocrisy of the term "loyalty in sports".
All day today, I've been listening to fans call into Detroit sports radio stations denigrating Ben Wallace for not being "loyal". I've been hearing things like "he should have taken a paycut to stay here, because here he could have retired a legend. He'll regret that when he's a 70 year old man looking back on his life." While at the same time, the man that's been the identity of the current Pistons team is now being characterized as a whiner, a malcontent, and it's really better off that he's gone because he wasn't loyal.
Flip to the Timberwolves. They have one of the best players of this era on their team but the team has struggled the past couple seasons. Now, all I read is that the Wolves should trade KG. It's one thing if it's just the media saying that, but now I'm seeing Minnesota fans talking about it too. And it's driving me crazy.
I'm making generalizations here, but I don't see how fans can be mad that an athlete leaves the team to go for greener pastures when the fans themselves will turn on those same athletes at the drop of a dime if things aren't going smooth. Maybe I'm the only person on earth that feels this way. But if I've chosen as a fan to put my heart into a team, I'd rather go through the ups and downs with that team than just dump them to cheer for a known winner. Likewise, if there's a player that is SYNONYMOUS with that team I'd rather the team stick with him through thick and thin than trade him as soon as things look bad. One of the most enjoyable parts of sports for me is the hope, the watching for the chance to see an underdog overcome, the idea that the "best" team on paper doesn't always win...sometimes heart and hustle can overcome. I've been a lifelong BENGALS fan, dangit! But if the majority of fans are no longer like me, if free agency or up-close media access or cartoonish player salaries or WHATEVER has made fans so cynical as to wish for a player like KG to be traded...then I can in no way blame a guy like Ben Wallace for ditching the home team and going after the "kwan".
Posted by Drz, The Frustrated Professor at 7/4/2006 9:10:00 PM