Wednesday, September 04, 2002

If there is one thing that bothers me the most about being a Boston/New England sports fan, it is the negativity that is shown around these parts. Media and fans alike can take anything, anything, and find a negative about it. It is maybe the one thing that Rick Pitino was right about in the time that he spent here.

For instance, Paul Pierce is playing in the World Championships in Indianapolis right now. He is having a great tourney, definately the leader of the team thus far. When the team needs a basket, or needs to go on a run, it is Pierce that they are turning too. And Paul has delivered. He has had some huge quarters to put teams away, including a 20 point quarter the other night. But what are people saying about it? Looking at all the Celtics message boards, many fans are unhappy with Pierce. They say it shows a selfishness about him. He needs to learn to pass and play team ball. He takes too many shots. He's not getting his teammates involved. The truth of the matter is, it appears as though Paul is the only one on the team who genuinely cares about winning this thing. While the other members of the team appear to be going through the motions, (except maybe Ben Wallace), Paul is doing all he can to win. The team has not played well in the first half's, and if you have noticed, Paul has not tried to take control a lot in the first half's of these games. I think that he is just giving his teammates a chance to do their thing, but at halftime he is becoming frustrated with them and so he decides to take over the game.
But that is evidently not good enough for people around here. It means that Pierce is selfish. What I would like is for these (not very knowledgeable) fans to submit a list of players they would rather have besides Pierce. My list would be short. Kobe, Duncan, (I leave Shaq out because of health concerns), and I can't think of anyone else I would rather have. So please, enlighten me, who do you want instead of Pierce? Or you could stop trying to create negatives and enjoy the fact that one of the top five players in the league plays for the team you root for.

What about Manny Ramirez? If someone said to you at the beginning of the year, "We'd like to give you an outfielder who will hit .372 in the first month of the season, get hurt and miss almost 2 months that throws him completely out of his rhythm, but then come back and pick it right up again so that with a month to go he is batting .333 with 25 HR's and 80 RBI's", what would you say? I think you'd be foolish not to take him. Even with the time missed because of the injury, he is still very valuable. But all anyone wants to do is take shots at him. He's lazy, he doesn't run hard, he misplays balls hit to him in the outfield.... I guess it is just the nature around here to look for the bad and overlook the good. Maybe the people saying those things want Darren Bragg back out there in right field. Maybe they yearn to have Jay Gibbins and his .242 average patrolling the outfield. I don't know. All I can say is that they make fools of themselves and sound like they know nothing when they criticize Manny.

I won't even get into Ron Borges and his vendetta against the Pats and Bill Belichick.