Friday, July 10, 2015

4 Views of DeAndre Jordan

Paul Pierce Instagrammed a what?
The sports world has lost its collective mind over the recent pas de deux performed by DeAndre Jordan with the Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Clippers. There were hijinks, there was low comedy, there are people coming out of the woodwork to offer their hot takes on the ethical ramifications (It's NBA free agency. Ethics need not apply) and there's a whole lot of money. But the things, most people mistakenly view this as a basketball story about a guy who agreed to a deal with one team but regretted it and was talked into going back to his old one, albeit for a giant pile of smackeroonies. 



And doing so is wrong. This circus is best understood as pop culture narrative. Looking at it strictly in basketball terms runs up up against cap negotiations, contract moratoriums, and other bland nonsense like that. Viewing it as what it is - entertainment - however, provides a whole new perspective. So stop thinking about it as a deal and realize:

1-It's Every Teen Comedy Movie Ever
Think about it: Awkward, gangly kid suddenly becomes popular and has a chance to go hang out with the rich cool kids (who may or may not be part of Cobra Kai), leaving his old friends and family behind. But wait - at the last minute, he decides that what really matters is friendship, and he turns his back on his new "friends" - who you just knew weren't going to treat him right - to reunite joyfully with the old ones. Cue slow-motion celebration sequence, possibly set to one of the more popular early tracks from Tears for Fears.

2-It's The Best Episode Of Entourage Ever
In which the gang is on the verge of splitting up because of internal tension and arguments and not everybody getting to ride the banana boat in the pool with LeBron. Things look bleak for the crew after Johnny Drama signs a deal to go make a movie in Romania with Nic Cage, but at the last minute Turtle (played in this case by J.J. Reddick) convinces everyone that they've been dorkholes. There's some frantic tweeting, then they get back together, play cards, and everyone hugs it out.

3-It's A Bad Fantasy Novel
In which the young hero who doesn't know his true heritage (rebounding CP3 misses from 3 and then jamming the putbacks home) is ensorcelled by an evil wizard (Mark Cuban, in the role he was born to play) and his nefarious henchman (Chandler Parsons, as played by Channing Tatum). Together they lure him away from his quest (for a Western Conference title) to a strange, magical place where his life force will be drained to revitalize an ancient undead creature (Dirk Nowitzki - work with me here) and there will never be a championship banner raised again. Only a rag-tag band of adventurers (Steve Ballmer, JJ Reddick, Blake Griffin, Doc Rivers, and Paul Pierce) can discover the magical spells (emoji tweets and $110M or so) to break the charm and return the befuddled prince to his rightful kingdom in the low post.

4-It's A Video Game
Sorry, Mark Cuban. Your princess is in another castle.

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