3 Reasons Being the Only Black Guy on Your Corporate Basketball Team is AMAZING
The past few weeks in sports have been depressing. I spent the last couple days deciding what to write about, and it all just made me sad.
Adrian Peterson and corporal punishment? Check.
Ray Rice and domestic violence? Yuck.
Roger Goodell and incompetence? Nah.
Just a bunch of divisive topics that will give me an ulcer in a couple years (#Thisis30).
So thank God I had the chance to play a Co-ed basketball game yesterday. It was the first sports-related thing that happened recently that put a smile on my face.
And you know why?
Because I’m Black.
Let me explain.
I’m not the world’s greatest basketball player. I haven’t dunked since high school ( 🙂 ), but I know what I’m doing out there. One of my favorite posts was basically a long rant about the players I hate when playing a pick up game. I like when people pass, cut, and don’t try to be Kobe. I’m a simple man.
But when I play on the corporate team?
Son. I am Kobe. And no one can tell me different. Go ahead and play this as a backdrop while I explain why being the only Black guy on your corporate basketball team is so great.
You never have to pass –
Now, I am willing to pass when I play ball. I realize that I (probably) won’t make every shot, so I’ll keep the ball moving for the sake of others.
But I also believe that every pass is a bad shot, so I make sure to take the first shot when my team is on offense. It’s usually a contested three-pointer.
And to quote the great Kanye West, “WHO GON’ STOP ME, HANNNN?!”
Quite simply, no one. No one gon’ check me.
Last week, I made three shots in a row in warm ups. I promptly declared myself “open” and told the team I was going to take our first two shots.
The game started (I did the jump ball…I also played point guard), I tipped it to a teammate, asked for the ball, then shot a three. Miss.
Called for the ball, got it, hoisted another shot. It’s great! Chances are, people think I’m better than I am. I thoroughly enjoy using that to my advantage and shooting whenever I want to. This must be what Kobe feels like.
You never have to come out –
My team has about eight normal players. Four guys and four girls. Now, the girls will never sub in for me. I expect that.
But the guys don’t either. And I think we all know why.
I don’t play in this league because I need another free t-shirt, I play to break a sweat.
Age thirty hit me like a ton of bricks. If I don’t make a concerted effort to work out, I gain weight. I think I can feel myself gain weight at my desk after three days without working out. Thirty sucks (stay young, kids).
Since all I want to do is get a work out in, it’s pretty great that no one will ever call my name after yelling “Sub!” during a dead ball. We play two 20-minute halves in my league, and I’m averaging 40 minutes a game. Swag.
You can play all five positions –
This might be the best benefit.
Want to be point guard? Just stand near the baseline after the other team makes a shot.
Want to be the be a big man? Just post up and refuse to move until someone throws you the ball.
Want to be Jordan? Just stand on the wing and call for the ball.
Are you a defensive specialist? Just pick out who you want to guard. Nobody will veto you.
These days (and let’s be honest, since birth) I’m not so good at defense. So I’ll pick out someone who I can obviously guard from six feet away and rest up on defense. That leaves me maximum stamina for more shots on offense. This makes every game fun. I literally cannot finish a game unhappy with the result. I always do what I set out to do. This usually includes a win, because chances are I’m the only Black guy on either team.
Let’s bask in the ambiance of this again by the way:
Hopefully this post was a welcome break from the grind that is professional sports these days. Maybe the NFL will take a break from all forms of domestic violence this week and we can talk about the action ON the field.
Are you a rec sports all star? Get your Al Bundy on in the comments below!