Meets and Greets

As they say here in Texas: Howdy, everyone! Ok, they don't really say that here as much as people think, but it seemed like a good way to start a blog anyway.

This is my first entry, and since I have absolutely nothing to add to Dan's too-kind description of last night's game against Atlanta (my timing was terrible!), I'm just going to introduce myself so people coming to this site can decide whether they want to spend any future time reading what I have to say. So here goes...

First and foremost, I am a proud member of that evil sub-culture known as "the bandwagoners". I probably shouldn't admit that, but in the interest of full disclosure, I must. I consider myself an NBA fan first, and a Suns fan second. I don't cheer for franchises. I cheer for teams, meaning some abstract combination of players and playing style that happens to get my attention as being more enjoyable to watch than any other. But it's not about winning and losing. It's more analogous to deciding whether to watch Law & Order or CSI. I don't care which one wins the Emmy, I just watch the one I enjoy the most.

I know what you're thinking: "No sense of loyalty", "fair-weather fan", etc, etc, and maybe you're right. I think it comes from not growing up in a city that had a major sports team. (In fact, I didn't live in any place bearing even a passing resemblance to a "city" until I was 25, but that's a story for another day). I cheered madly for Larry Bird's Celtics as a high school kid in the 80's, didn't watch the NBA at all during the Michael Jordan years (college graduation took priority), and picked it up again a few years ago midway through the 2002-03 Dallas Mavericks run to the conference finals. After watching that team gut its way to Game 6 against the Spurs despite losing their primary scorer (sound familiar?), I was completely bummed when Mark Cuban proceded to dismantle the team that got me interested in the NBA again, and replaced it with some weird mish-mash of ill-fitting trade pieces in 03-04. Still, I stuck with them, and watched every game, because in all the tinkering, most of the players I had gotten kind of "attached" to in my short "second life" as an NBA fan were still there.

In the summer of 2004, the Mavericks transformed themselves into a much better team, but one that bore little resemblance to the one I had been cheering on for over a year. With all the players I cared about watching no longer on the team, this seemed to be a good time to un-addict myself from it and move onto something else. But then I got roped into going to one more game by a family member, and that one game happened to be Steve Nash's first game against Dallas in November 2004. Midway through that game, I realized that the unselfish, run-and-gun style of play I'd grown to love hadn't died, it had just moved west a couple of states. And so, I gleefully hopped on the bandwagon, and have been riding along ever since. Still, I'd like to think I at least got on a little earlier than a lot of other people did. Given the ease with which I was able to obtain tickets for that game on 2-days notice, I might very well be right.

So there you have it. A rare look inside the mind of a dreaded "bandwagoner". I hope I didn't scare you too much.