Monday, March 29, 2010

why I don't like Duke...(but I still love Amanda)

I played basketball in high school. I wasn't great, but I was on a great team and I developed a huge love for the game. It was the one sport my mom would watch with me on TV (I was on my own with football. Nobody in my house watched but me and my bro...) March Madness was/is always a favorite time of the year...not only because it happens during THE MONTH OF MEL but because it was a bonding time for my me and my momma.

The year was 1992 and Christian Laettner was playing for Duke in the finals against Kentucky. It was a heated game. A close game. A very physical game...

I watched Duke a lot during the season. I never liked Laettner, I had seen some very poor sportsman-like behavior over the year--and I thought Coach K (who I'd always admired) should've been doing more to unswell Laettner's head and his attitude. But (as is with a lot of programs) if the player is great, then he can often get by with being an ugly sport.

Anyway, back to the finals. Laettner stomps on a Kentucky player that fell. It wasn't a rib-breaking was more of a tap, BUT it was an intentional move that showed Laettner's true colors. Initially, Laettner denied it was an intentional move, but later he admitted he was getting Timberlake back for pushing him earlier in the game.

Now, I could've lived with the childish behavior if he had been dealt with properly. (he got a Technical foul in the game, as he should have, but honestly, Coach K should have punished him for being such a tool. He didn't.) And that's when I lost respect for Coach K and in the end, the entire Duke athletic program.

You wanna know why I think Laettner was never punished for his actions? Because in the last seconds of the game, he scored the winning shot. And we all know that nothing is more important than winning, right?

So yeah, I hate Duke. (but I still love all my friends who love them...)


  1. I have done everything in my power to care about basketball this month.

    Nothin. I got nothin. I'm the same about hockey. I just can't care no matter how hard I try.


  2. Chrissy, you either love it or you don't. I got bitten by the bug watching Larry Bird play. Was a huge Celtics fan. Then Joe Klein (a former Razorback) played for the Celtics as well and that was all she wrote.

    For me, I'm just fascinated by my deep hatred for a program based on this one player, and that one event. It doesn't really make sense, but it's there...and I can't imagine it going away.

  3. Amanda Brice11:46 AM

    LOL, I still love you, too, Mel. And it wasn't a stomp. It was a tap. Yeah, totally not classy and he never should have stooped to it, but Timberlake wasn't exactly pure as driven snow either. But no, he never should have done it.

    My second or third year of law school, I met this lawyer who literally has a mural of The Shot on his wall in the basement. He hired an artist to paint it. It took 18 months, and the artist painted the lawyer and his wife in the front row. Pretty awesome.

    I LOVE that Kentucky choked this year. LOL!

    Oh, and my infant is currently doing better than 91% of America in her bracket, according to She's kicking my butt, that's for sure.

  4. I was always a fan of Kentucky basketball which might contribute a tee-tiny bit of my Puke on Duke attitude. Maybe. Also, I really like UNC and I know you can't like both UNC and Duke...

    Yeah, I think the classlessness of Laettner's actions really got me. He'd been like that all year long and it burned my belly to see him do that and then try to pretend (at first) that he was just regaining his balance. Whatever dude. If you're gonna act like a tool, at least own the behavior. LOL

  5. I'm more a football fan. About the only time I watch basketball is when Michigan State makes the playoffs. (If I thought U of M could make the playoffs, I might watch more.) Go Spartans. =o)

    Your post reminds me of part of the reason I hate certain teams in football, though. Nothing like sanctioned poor-sportsmenship to tick me off.

  6. LOL you guys are hilarious. You girls and your sports...

  7. This basketball you speak of...can the basket be used for shopping in anyway?

  8. I was all, "Who's Duke?"