So STAT has left. Are we bothered? Damn straight we are!
But why are we bothered? Well, read on and find out why over the coming season I will be spewing forth more bile towards Amare, than I've lavished comments of adoration towards Lou (yes, my heart is still broken from Lou not being here).
A quick bit about me: Because of my profession, I need to give everybody the opportunity to justify what they have done, I look at everything from an impartial standpoint and I look at why certain people do certain things - the cause behind the action. I also, like a lot of other people, am interested in the very basics of psychology - why people do what they do, why I think like I think etc
So when it comes to Amar'e, I know there's a lot to consider.
When Amar'e used to show a little too much emotion on the court in certain situations and get himself needlessly into trouble, I put it down to the fact that he came straight from highschool, was still fairly immature from a basketball standpoint and because his past has probably, at some stage, hindered his emotional development (yeah, yeah, I know...looking too deep into it but that's genuinely what I do).
When Amar'e never came out and said he'd be happy to stay with the Suns, I put it down to the fact that he'd been shopped around the league - publicly or not. He'd lost faith in the organisation that had drafted him.
When he didn't accept the contract offer Mr Sarver put before him, I could understand why not. After all, he's come back from injuries that would end others careers, improved season upon season, been one of the Suns top performers every season and generally been a face of the franchise. I liked Sarver's contract offer and think it was more than fair but I could understand from STAT's point of view why he might reject it.
I can even justify in my mind why, after he openly said that he wanted to play for a contender, he chose the Knicks. Think about it...he's not any teams top 3 options in this years FA market. We all know that's covered by Bosh, Wade and Lebron. So instead of wait around to be a second fiddle for a team, or to be an afterthought, he chose to move early and been in charge of his own destiny. And why not New York? It's an iconic place and to be the man to start the transformation (if/when it happens) is something that would be remembered for a very long time.
I can justify, at least to myself, why all of the above happened and although it hurts, I can numb the pain by explaining it away.
But the thing that hurts the most and the thing that will make me boo him until my lungs bleed, is the fact that he made me care.
He made me care when he dunked all over Tolliver and changed the course of that GState - Suns game. He made me see what I had chosen to ignore before; that he was a beast and he could be the man to lead us to the promised land with Steve.
So cheers Amar'e, for making me care, only to turn your back on us. I will boo you everytime I see you. And I hope your time on a 'contender' is enjoyable.
Oh, and say 'hi' to Eddy Curry for me.