Part of why I wanted to start writing about basketball has to do with the sheer volume of NBA related media I consume on a daily basis. Between twitter sharing articles worth reading, not to mention podcasts, there isn't a day that goes by where I don't spend at least a few hours reading, listening and thinking about NBA basketball. Not just Dallas, in fact, I'd argue that most of my content consumption tends to be about other teams, which I think is why I get so pissy when things headed south for Dallas last year.
But right now, as we're right on the cusp of basketball starting, things feel utterly perfect. Rosters are set, schedules are up, and all that's left to do is wait, wonder, and hope. The result of that is nearly endless content from everywhere about literally every basketball concept and just about all of them are optimistic. Even the downtrodden articles about sadder teams are filled with a touch of hope because basketball is right around the corner.
Even our Mavs Moneyball email chains have been free of arguments for nearly a month. To help you explain why I think this is worth mentioning, keep in mind that while we all like one another a great deal, we occasionally argue like Congress during the shut down. Each MMB contributor is passionate and knowledgeable and loves the Mavericks, so things get heated now and then. Even with some of the concerns brought on by preseason, we're all just so damned excited about what's coming. Win, lose, draw... basketball is back.
Twelve years after Calvin Booth's game five winning shot over the Utah Jazz, I still get excited thinking about it. I was 16 and had been watching the Mavericks in a different part of the house; my mom called me down, she wanted to watch the last few minutes with me. Now, my mom is a casual fan... she watches every game, but usually reads the news paper or a magazine while they're on. But right then,standing next to her, the only thing in the world to pay attention to was Dallas coming back from behind to seal a series deciding win. I'll never forget her cheering and when Booth sank that rather ridiculous baseline fade away. This moment will always make me happy.
We have plenty to gripe about in our lives, but sports is supposed to be a release. It's so incredibly easy to be negative about the last decade and a half despite some of the incredible success. 2006 and 2007 were so hard despite being really incredible. The last two years have been maddening after seeing Dirk take Dallas to the promised land. But we've witnessed more than just a championship: we've seen a 67 win team, Dirk win a game seven in over time, and countless classic games. Being a sports fan is supposed to be fun, and I think it's important now and then to be happy; not only about the past, but also about what's to come.
Right now, with a truly clean slate heading into the 2013-2014 season, I'm making the choice to be happy and excited. Dallas may be amazing, they may be god awful. But right now, at this moment, I'm relishing thinking and talking about what they might become. I know I'm not always going to feel this way. Heck, if Dallas gives up five offensive boards in the first quarter opening night, I'm sure I'll proclaim that the sky is falling and that it's time to start tanking.
Remind me of this when and if I head that way. We're all in this together. Basketball is amazing.
Let's go Mavs.