Wednesday, December 07, 2005



Last Friday, I attended the Seattle Sonics game. It was awesome (even though their season is less than stellar). They were playing the Cleveland Cavaliers, and I got a seat at center court 18 rows back. While I have no real loyalty to (or against) either team, I was looking forward to seeing Lebron James live and in action. A couple sitting next to me had flown in from Fairbanks, Alaska just to attend the game It was their first NBA game, and they thought that the Cavaliers were probably going to win. By the end of the first quarter, however, all three of us were cheering for the Sonics along with the 5 foot nothing season ticket holder to my right who I forgive for hitting my beer hand repeatedly (thus causing some spillage). AND THE SONICS WON!

This brings me to the problem I have with professional team sports…I’ve never really known which team to support. This is a huge confession coming from the daughter of a sportscaster and a self-proclaimed member of the Raider Nation. NOW HOLD IT! HOLD IT!. Don’t start booing just yet. I got some ‘splaining to do.

In high school, I pulled for the school I attended. This was particularly important as I danced at every halftime show. And yes, I was on the dance squad. I was not just shaking my ass in the bleachers (although I have been known to shake my ass in the bleachers). I grew up as an Auburn fan and spent my first year of college drinking my way through Auburn University, so my college allegiance is unquestioned. (The tiny liberal arts school in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts from which I graduated couldn’t muster an ultimate Frisbee team, let alone compete in football so there was no competition for my loyalty). But Alabama doesn’t have an NFL or an NBA team. Everybody was a Braves fan by default. Who was my pro sports self supposed to support (please applaud the alliteration at will).

I lived in LA (Los Angeles, not Lower Alabama) for a few years and followed the Lakers, the Kings, the Dodgers, and the Raiders. The Lakers eventually started losing. The Kings traded an entire line that had taken them to the finals that year. I saw Darryl Strawberry at bat and heard a sober man scream “Do what you fucking get paid to do…Hit it!” That was the beginning of my seasons of discontent.

Does one pull for the city in which one resides? I’ve moved too often. Does one pull for the coach? They can get fired when losing or jump ship when winning. Or do you pull for a specific player? Talk about show me the money.

So here’s how I shake down…I pull for the Oakland Raiders (oh, shut it) and the New York Yankees. I don’t start following the NBA until playoffs and then follow the most dramatic and graceful players. I’m still pissed at the NHL for last season (or lack thereof) and spend my time watching the San Diego Gulls. And for any of you Aussie rules fans, I barrack for Collingwood – I even have the scarf and the black-and-white striped socks.

Go Team!

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