On Becoming an NBA and Knicks Fan


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Let me start out by stating one thing. I’m not a fan of the NBA, and even less of any particular team.

Growing up, the biggest sport we watched was baseball. I played it as a kid, and as many, grew up watching the World Series that were nationally televised; still too young to figure out ways to watch the team I loved, The Yankees.

I liked the Yankees at first simply because it was the shirt I received when I first came to the US. It had a big top hat with red and white stripes and the words “Bronx Bombers” we’re big and bold. I wore that shirt until it literally faded. And while I don’t live in NY, as an 11 year old, I repped the Bronx HARD.

Other sports were almost non-existent. My dad wasn’t really into them, nor weren’t mother and sisters. When dad died when I was 15, I was the only guy at home. No one really watched more than the playoffs, and sports weren’t really that huge, other than following as I could.

I ne’er “got” the NFL. Everyone loved it, and I hardly watched the Superbowl. It wouldn’t be until I moved to Pittsburgh in 2007 that I was face to face with a great sports town. During football season, you either watched the Steelers, or you had nothing meaningful to talk about with people. Steelers is THE thing in the ‘burgh. Since I had no other allegiances, I began watching. It was wonderful. I quickly became a fan of the Steelers.

But NBA? Not so much. It’s weir though because it’s not that I haven’t had the chance, it’s more that I was still learning how to become a sports fan myself.

I’m a Yankees fan and a Steelers fan, and that will not change. Once I commit to becoming a fan, it’s a rap… no switching teams… no “oh, I was only watching.” If I’m going to be in it, then I want to know the sport, the team, and be a true fan of the game.

I’ve never disliked the (NBA) sport. Its only that I haven’t had the chance or interest in it… Until recently.

Inevitably, as with much of NY, I have been pleasantly impressed by Jeremy Lin’s underdog story. Moreover, you cannot deny the kid is a great player and has ignited something on that team. From what I’ve begun to watch (sparingly) and read (research), overall team production has gone up. The team is on a roll.

I get it. Things change. Players leave. Good runs come to a stop.

However, this had the effect of drawing a certain amount of interest to me. I began enjoying watching the games.

Could this be another “becoming a fan” moment for me?

I know why I became a fan of the Yankees and Steelers an why I began watching those sports… but basketball? I would have never thought it.

You might think I’m taking this decision too seriously. “It’s just sports.” Yes, you’re right. But I’m not “just a fan.” Well, I am, but I don’t just want to watch a game when they’re winning and go to parades and cheer for the wrong player, (i.e., the “Sanchez Girls” at the Giants parade).

If that’s what I’d be, then it’s not worth it.

I like to think of the Knicks potentially gaining a life-long fan of the team and sport. I say potentially because, while it’s close, I’m still weighing it.

This will potentially be a big part of my children’s upbringing. Family time, etc…

So… there you have it. I am starting to entertain the possibility of becoming a Knicks and NBA fan. Probably because I also have access to MSG Network an can watch every game, similar to the YES Network and the Yankees.

Thoughts?

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