It's been a while, I know. I'm not dead, at least not all the way. Two reasons I haven't been here much - one, I've been outstandingly busy, moreso than I've been in my life; and two, I've sadly found little transcendence in this year's playoffs. The East has been a swirling nexus of suck, outside of - oddly enough - those Scrappy Pistons and Sixers. The Suns were bounced from the first round, but more importantly, they are not the Suns we knew. The Nuggets were nothing they were supposed to be, and now they may not be much of anything at all. The old order is failing, and the new is forming its own path; in the meantime, we have the Celtics and the Cavs going seven games, and unjustifiable first-round sweeps.
Where, truly, is the inspiration? Where can one invoke the sublime where there is none? It is springs like this that reveal the lie of ascribing meaning to a game, a team, a player, a series. At least, that is what I am desperate to disbelieve. Perhaps I, and others as basketball fans, were spoiled by Golden State; maybe we were misled into expecting high creation, grand opera - Philip Glass, perhaps - at every basketball game. Maybe we were made to have our hearts broken by loss - Nash - and frustration - Melo. But, maybe next year's Rookie-Sophomore game will shake the word, metaphorically speaking. Maybe, or maybe undeniably, the future will answer every question and satisfy every need; the future will bring us new blood and new ways of seeing, maybe new ways of being. Yet, now, this year, my only hope resides in the New Orleans Hornets.
I have waited too long to write as much as should be written about this team. In 24 minutes of basketball, they will either be into an epic matchup with the Lakers, or out of the playoffs - and if it's the later, maybe so will I. But I believe. Despite it all, damnit, I believe.
My belief may have to wait. But in the meantime? Candace Parker had herself an epic game of historic proportions. Or maybe it was an historic game of epic proportions? Either way, it was an epic game, or at least an epic second half. And, even as just the opening game of the season, it was played with more desperation and desire to win than, say, six of those Celts/Cavs games. It was amazing. I'm glad I, at least, will have great basketball to watch this summer, even if most people will only see what they play in Beijing.
(As an addendum to this: oh, fuck you, Tony Kornheiser. I used to like watching PTI. But then, professional women's basketball is "a cute little summer league" and Parker's historic game was "nice". I can't even muster up anger over this, just sadness and disgust. No wonder people don't like you, Tony Kornheiser. My irritation has been building, but this caps it. You're a sad example of your generation. And you, Wilbon, if you like women's basketball so much, how about you stop talking about the "ugly uniforms", and start defending its validity as a sport against an old bag like Kornheiser? I think that question answers itself.)