I was watching the Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat basketball game recently when I saw one of the players for the Heat do something that I thought was sort of dumb, in a hot dog sort of way.
The player made a nice shot, and as he ran down the court, he looked directly into one of the TV cameras and stared with look that said, “Hey, look at me. I made that shot.”
I hate that sort of stuff.
As I watched the player primp his way down the court, I decided that if I did something like that when I was in high school, I would still be running the steps in the St. Xavier’s Catholic High School gymnasium. Jim Westerhaus, my coach at St. X, didn’t even like the behind-the-back pass. He thought it was showboating. So if one of his players had popped a “Hey, look at me” attitude, the look would have quickly changed to “Hey, look at me run the stairs.”
I realize that times have changed and that players today are allowed, and in some cases encouraged, to showboat a bit, but since when did showboating come to mean “act like a jerk”?
An NBA player makes a basket or blocks a shot, and he acts as if he just won a league championship. He waves his arms, he points to himself, he pulls on his jersey to show everyone his name, and then he goes on defense and lets someone drive right by him and score a quick bucket.
When that happens, does the guy slap himself in the head and point to himself as if to say “Look at me; I just screwed up and got beat for an easy layup”?
I don’t mean to pick on the Miami Heat here because a lot of players on a lot of NBA teams behave that way. It’s considered part of the game. I guess that’s why I make it a habit not to watch a lot of NBA games. The only reason I was watching the Boston vs. Miami game in the first place was because the St. Louis Cardinals had already lost to the Atlanta Braves.