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Timeout! Oct.2 Edition

Submitted by Alton Young on October 2, 2013 – 9:15 amOne Comment


Sports Editor Alton Young

Uh oh, guess what day it is? Guess…what…day… Nope, it’s not Hump day, or I guess it could be, depending on when you’re reading this. As I write, the NBA is opening its training camps around the country and if you know me even a little, you know that I love this game!

The NBA has been my favorite of the professional sports leagues for as long as I can remember. It may have something to do with the fact that I think I have a jump shot, or at least I thought I had one. I could have sworn I just had it around here somewhere. Hey! Anybody see where I put my jumper? Oh well. I thought I had one.

Anyway, I’ll have some other opportunity to talk about basketball when the season starts next month and when our own Trojan teams take the court in early November. But what I have to talk about right now is the revelation or rumor, or just plain lie that the NBA is going to let select players wear jerseys with their nicknames on them for a game or two this season. This will be pretty cool for players like King James (LeBron James-Miami Heat) or the Black Mamba (Kobe Bryant-L.A. Lakers), not so much for AK-47 (Andrei Kirilenko-Brooklyn Nets) – I bet he doesn’t get to wear that nickname.

Thank goodness Shaquille O’Neal is retired, they don’t make jerseys long enough for all of his self-given nicknames- The Big Aristotle, The Big Toe, and now Shaqcramento. What’s up with Shaq, who won championships with the Lakers and Heat, being a part of the new ownership of the Sacramento Kings or Sacramento “Queens” as he famously called them years ago? Does that seem right to you?

Opponents of the idea say young athletes don’t need to see their favorite players wearing their nicknames on their jerseys. They say that it will only promote the me-first attitude and selfishness that can sometimes be found in sports. But if some kid isn’t passing the ball in practice, I’m thinking that it’s not because these NBA guys are wearing nicknames on their jerseys.

I think we should all lighten up and have some fun with it, because that is what the NBA is going for. (I’m conveniently ignoring the fact that NBA will make bundles of money from the sales of these jerseys, in what some would call a blatant cash-grab. Remember, I said we’re taking this lightly.)

I’m interested to see what name players like Dwyane Wade puts on his jersey. Will he be Flash from earlier in his career, or will he be the widely panned WOW (Way of Wade) from this past season, or perhaps he’ll want to be the number 3, which he adopted after winning his third championship? I’m not sure how that would work on a jersey that already has his number on it. It really doesn’t matter what he decides to go with; it’s just cool that he can do it, if only for a day.

In fact I have an idea, let’s all put our nicknames on the backs of our clothes for just one day. I want everyone to rock their family-given nicknames, or their nicknames from friends. Heck, I’ll even take pet names from a significant other. Just as long as no one wears He Hate Me on their back. That XFL classic is retired and reserved for the jersey nickname Hall of Fame that we’re going to start the day after we wear them.

I’m pretty sure good ones like The Truth (Paul Pierce-Brooklyn Nets) are going right into the Hall, but if someone even thinks that some weird stuff like Honey Boo-Boo should make it in, then we have a problem. We have to have some standards, right?

So, what would your nickname jersey for a day say?

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