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View Full Version : Why so many choose not to root for USA in international competition


Wiley_e
09-06-2006, 05:45 AM
Final Blog entry of a german Basketball Sportswriter for the WC:
http://www.fiba.com/pages/eng/fe/06_wcm/fanZone/blog/fe_fanZone_expeBlog.asp?newsID=16301

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 07:39 AM
I do root for america but the biggest reason that i would think is that alot of people just dont like the players. If i wasnt a lebron and Joe Johnson and Dwight howard and chris Bosh etc fan i wouldnt care if they won either.

Underdog
09-06-2006, 08:24 AM
I do root for america but the biggest reason that i would think is that alot of people just dont like the players. If i wasnt a lebron and Joe Johnson and Dwight howard and chris Bosh etc fan i wouldnt care if they won either.


Exactly - nothing against the good ol' USA (when it comes to sports), but how can you root for the players on our squad? It seemed like most of the likeable athletes in the Worlds were playing for another country... Also, there's something about rooting for the underdog (since America invented the sport, we can never be underdogs - by default...)

Wiley_e
09-06-2006, 08:28 AM
Actually here in Germany most young Basketball players and fans genuinely do like certain NBA players (a lot of them among the players who participated in the wc). They are still the most idolized players worldwide.
It's more a matter of what kind of attitude they are carrying before and during such events that makes the difference. Even most american media did carry a similar attitude in the past. That has changed this year somewhat - but to call it a general change still would be too much a word.

Still i think if the core of this group of players sticks together for another few years and keeps taking international competition seriously they quickly will regain a lot of sympathy - and success will come back along the way for sure. After all they still are "THE" team to beat - but they should start to acknowledge (to themselves!) that a few others have joined them at the top.

Flacolaco
09-06-2006, 09:13 AM
International competition has nothing to do with individuals. When you watch the Olympics do you check out each individual bobsledder or sprinter, or water polo player to decide whether or not you "like" them?

Hell no. Who has time for that? You root for the one with the Stars and Stripes on their jersey. International competition is blind to individuals. You root for the team, for the idea of your country, for national pride. I'll watch/root for any American on tv compete against someone from another country in any stupid sport you want; curling, skiing, basketball, hell even if the stupidity and pointlessness of the fake sport of NASCAR became us against other countries, I'd even watch that god aweful excuse for entertainment.

I dont give a damn who's playing, for all I know the guys from the other teams are jerks too. Who cares? You think people in France or Italy or Mexico root for the German soccer team because they like some dude? F@ck no! They have passion, they have pride for their country.

u2sarajevo
09-06-2006, 09:38 AM
International competition has nothing to do with individuals. When you watch the Olympics do you check out each individual bobsledder or sprinter, or water polo player to decide whether or not you "like" them?

Hell no. Who has time for that? You root for the one with the Stars and Stripes on their jersey. International competition is blind to individuals. You root for the team, for the idea of your country, for national pride. I'll watch/root for any American on tv compete against someone from another country in any stupid sport you want; curling, skiing, basketball, hell even if the stupidity and pointlessness of the fake sport of NASCAR became us against other countries, I'd even watch that god aweful excuse for entertainment.

I dont give a damn who's playing, for all I know the guys from the other teams are jerks too. Who cares? You think people in France or Italy or Mexico root for the German soccer team because they like some dude? F@ck no! They have passion, they have pride for their country.Exactly.

I can't believe there are so many people that rooted for the US to fail. Really was disheartening. Okay, so you like Dirk. So wish for him to do well in a game where your Country comes out on top. Win-win.... it's not like you have a vested interest in Germany winning (talking to US citizens). I guess you could argue the same about the US team, but I think the weight would swing more to the US side than it would to any other Country if you are a US Citizen.

I'm sure it's George Bush's fault that some have lost their National pride..... right? Or is the reason you turn your back on the team that represents your Country lie on the shoulders of a player that hails from Miami? Is that it? Wow.... don't know how either can be justified. It just doesn't compute.

jthig32
09-06-2006, 09:41 AM
It's basketball, not war.

u2sarajevo
09-06-2006, 09:42 AM
It's basketball, not war.So.... you should only root for your Country in a War then.......


edit: National pride is only a concern when guns are involved.... I just don't get that. So only fly your flag when the heat is on......

jthig32
09-06-2006, 09:48 AM
So.... you should only root for your Country in a War then.......

No, but you appear to be giving this that kind of weight.

I'll admit, I was conflicted. It felt weird. But when I sat down to watch that game, my heart wanted Germany to win. Germany had the one guy I had a vested interest in.

When the U.S. played any other team, I would prefer that they win, but I had no real interest, at all.

I don't know why, exactley. I was all over the World Cup, and cheered the U.S. with vigor.

The Ryder Cup is one of my favorite sporting events, and I am looking forward to rooting the U.S. on with passion.

But I just can't get behind the U.S.A. basketball team for some reason. They just don't evoke any emotion in me. And Dirk does. Dunno what else to say.

Edit for your edit: National pride is always important. But the country's basketball team isn't necessarily a guage of where national pride is at.

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 09:53 AM
International competition has nothing to do with individuals. When you watch the Olympics do you check out each individual bobsledder or sprinter, or water polo player to decide whether or not you "like" them?

Hell no. Who has time for that? You root for the one with the Stars and Stripes on their jersey. International competition is blind to individuals. You root for the team, for the idea of your country, for national pride. I'll watch/root for any American on tv compete against someone from another country in any stupid sport you want; curling, skiing, basketball, hell even if the stupidity and pointlessness of the fake sport of NASCAR became us against other countries, I'd even watch that god aweful excuse for entertainment.

I dont give a damn who's playing, for all I know the guys from the other teams are jerks too. Who cares? You think people in France or Italy or Mexico root for the German soccer team because they like some dude? F@ck no! They have passion, they have pride for their country.

Hey like i said i liked the US team but those are COMPLETELY different circumstances. Has anyone spent the last several years HATING the american bobsledders or whatever random sport you pick? Have any of the same people spent the last several years with a vested interest in the success and growth of the best player on another team in any of those sports? Until those things happen its not an applicable analogy.

I actually disagree with the point about this team being likeable that someone else mentioned. I really like(d) this team. I love Lebron and D12(you specifically should love d12 nashty) and JJ and Chris Paul and Bosh and etc. As for rooting for the underdog, yeah that can be fun but i much prefer rooting for something dominant assuming its not a bandwagon thing. Its why i always root for federer in tennis. The hope of seeing greatness is why i watch sports. Its not to see a 16th seed beat a 1 seed. I much prefer when the best team/player wins which is why im not much of an underdog guy unless i have a history of rooting for that player/team. In short i think that the reason alot of people dont root for america anymore is the exact opposite of that point. Its because the US is no longer an overwhelming favorite that some dont root for them.

u2sarajevo
09-06-2006, 09:55 AM
No, but you appear to be giving this that kind of weight.

I'll admit, I was conflicted. It felt weird. But when I sat down to watch that game, my heart wanted Germany to win. Germany had the one guy I had a vested interest in.

When the U.S. played any other team, I would prefer that they win, but I had no real interest, at all.

I don't know why, exactley. I was all over the World Cup, and cheered the U.S. with vigor.

But I just can't get behind the U.S.A. basketball team for some reason. They just don't evoke any emotion in me. And Dirk does. Dunno what else to say.

Edit for your edit: National pride is always important. But the country's basketball team isn't necessarily a guage of where national pride is at.Well, the only "weight" I was trying to give it was when it comes to supporting the US. No, it's not War. But it is our Country being represented. That used to matter. And I'm glad to see that to "some" it still does. Old Fashioned maybe? I guess. But I am a bit afraid that this light-switch support of our Country (be it in War, Political battles, Sports, etc...) is dangerously close to leading to our eventual demise. At the very least it is tearing the US apart Politically. I know I am now delving into a conversation that belongs in another forum.... but it is related. I can still have contempt for Dwyane when he's wearing a Heat uniform but support him when he represents the place I wake up every morning.

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 10:01 AM
I can still have contempt for Dwyane when he's wearing a Heat uniform but support him when he represents the place I wake up every morning.
I know, its exactly how i feel about jerry stackhouse and the mavs

jthig32
09-06-2006, 10:01 AM
Well, the only "weight" I was trying to give it was when it comes to supporting the US. No, it's not War. But it is our Country being represented. That used to matter. And I'm glad to see that to "some" it still does. Old Fashioned maybe? I guess. But I am a bit afraid that this light-switch support of our Country (be it in War, Political battles, Sports, etc...) is dangerously close to leading to our eventual demise. At the very least it is tearing the US apart Politically. I know I am now delving into a conversation that belongs in another forum.... but it is related. I can still have contempt for Dwyane when he's wearing a Heat uniform but support him when he represents the place I wake up every morning.

So, out of curiosity, do you also believe that the U.S. President should be supported no matter what? If you're a republican, did you tell people not speak badly of Mr. Clinton, because he was our President and he deserves our respect? If you are a democrat, do you now tell people to not speak ill of our President, because he deserves our respect?

Look, likes and dislikes affect people. You can't just drape a U.S. flag over Bill Clinton and tell me to like him, and you certainly can't do it with his wife.

I liked your reference to a light switch. In general, I will always root for the U.S. in all endeavors. But there will be times that I have a much more vested interest in someone that is opposing them, no matter what the competition. At that time, I can't just flip a switch, and forget about the 7 months I just spent loving Dirk and hating the NBA players on other teams.

u2sarajevo
09-06-2006, 10:07 AM
So, out of curiosity, do you also believe that the U.S. President should be supported no matter what? If you're a republican, did you tell people not speak badly of Mr. Clinton, because he was our President and he deserves our respect? If you are a democrat, do you now tell people to not speak ill of our President, because he deserves our respect?Yes. Yes. And I'm not a DemocratLook, likes and dislikes affect people. You can't just drape a U.S. flag over Bill Clinton and tell me to like him, and you certainly can't do it with his wife.It's not the individual person you need to throw your support behind. That's the entire point of my argument.I liked your reference to a light switch. In general, I will always root for the U.S. in all endeavors. But there will be times that I have a much more vested interest in someone that is opposing them, no matter what the competition. At that time, I can't just flip a switch, and forget about the 7 months I just spent loving Dirk and hating the NBA players on other teams.Like I pointed out.... you don't have to. If the US Army were made up of all the people you disliked and couldn't stand your entire life I think you wouldn't turn your back on them when they went to war. It's the same thing here. It's not an individual anymore.... It's your backyard.

jthig32
09-06-2006, 10:13 AM
Well, for me, at least, basketball does not appear to be important enough to cause me to look past the individuals that make up the team. This is not an opinion, it is fact.

The Ryder cup, for whatever reason, is enough. I hate several of the U.S. players, but the Ryder Cup evokes enough emotion in me that I am able to look past that.

Like I said, I felt conflicted about the whole thing, but when I watched the game, I got excited when Germany did well. Nothing I can do about it.

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 10:13 AM
I was gonna say something but i dont want to turn this into a political debate Ill just say it like this, As far as the president goes, no matter who wins it you have to respect the office of the presidency if not the man himself. I respected the presidency when clinton was there, i respect it now and i will continue to respect it no matter who wins it in 08 and 12 etc. I dont put the US basketball team on quite the same pedastool as the presidency. Essentially the argument boils down to this, U2 is making the Support the name on the front of the jersey not the back argument, Jthig is making the support the name on the back argument and I think its pretty hard to look at jersey and not see both so there is a balancing act.

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 10:17 AM
Well, for me, at least, basketball does not appear to be important enough to cause me to look past the individuals that make up the team. This is not an opinion, it is fact.



Not to quibble or anything but when you say for me at least, that generally means something is an opinion and not a fact. Nothing wrong with the opinion but im not sure i would be trying to pass it off as a fact.

jthig32
09-06-2006, 10:19 AM
Ok, let me throw this out there.

Could anything ever happen to the way this country is run, to make you move out of it?

Or do you just blindly support your country, because it's your country?

Now obviously, this kind of question is on a MASSIVELY larger scale than the stupid basketball team. But I think the point works. I don't blindly support my country. It's entirely within the realm of possibility that events could happen in my lifetime that would make me want to move (although I'm not sure where I'd move to)

So just simply saying "it's your country, support it" doesn't necessarily fly with me.

jthig32
09-06-2006, 10:21 AM
Not to quibble or anything but when you say for me at least, that generally means something is an opinion and not a fact. Nothing wrong with the opinion but im not sure i would be trying to pass it off as a fact.

Re-read what I said:

Well, for me, at least, basketball does not appear to be important enough to cause me to look past the individuals that make up the team. This is not an opinion, it is fact.

I said this in regards to me, to my personal feelings. It is a fact that international basketball is not important enough to me, on a national scale, to make me blindly support them.

This is a fact.

It was a fact with poort grammar at the beginning of the sentence, but it was a fact. ;)

Drbio
09-06-2006, 11:15 AM
I took a lot of crap for saying screw Dirk in another thread, but the dude was playing for Germany not the US. He was (for a day) the enemy and I rooted against him with all my heart. I am 100% certified US Flag toting American and I am damn proud of it.

USA above all else.

I was Germany's biggest fan fora ll but one game, but when the shat hits the fan I always will suppport/defend/root for/whatever the United States of America. With all due respect to my friends in other countries (I love many of them...Japan, Australia, England)...the US is the place for me.

Flacolaco
09-06-2006, 11:26 AM
I took a lot of crap for saying screw Dirk in another thread, but the dude was playing for Germany not the US. He was (for a day) the enemy and I rooted against him with all my heart. I am 100% certified US Flag toting American and I am damn proud of it.

USA above all else.

I was Germany's biggest fan fora ll but one game, but when the shat hits the fan I always will suppport/defend/root for/whatever the United States of America. With all due respect to my friends in other countries (I love many of them...Japan, Australia, England)...the US is the place for me.

Thumbs up buddy

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 11:28 AM
I took a lot of crap for saying screw Dirk in another thread, but the dude was playing for Germany not the US. He was (for a day) the enemy and I rooted against him with all my heart. I am 100% certified US Flag toting American and I am damn proud of it.

USA above all else.

I was Germany's biggest fan fora ll but one game, but when the shat hits the fan I always will suppport/defend/root for/whatever the United States of America. With all due respect to my friends in other countries (I love many of them...Japan, Australia, England)...the US is the place for me.
I understand the intent of that message and to a certain degree i agree with it but you went a little far with the screw dirk part. If you had said hey screw germany, hope they lose by 100 i could have been there with you, but i will never say screw dirk. Just like i would never say screw vince young. If in 3 years they were playing the cowboys in the superbowl i would want the cowboys to win but i would never say screw dirk. Both have done enough for teams that i love that they get lifetime passes from screw __________ to ever apply to them.

u2sarajevo
09-06-2006, 11:48 AM
Ok, let me throw this out there.

Could anything ever happen to the way this country is run, to make you move out of it?Hell noOr do you just blindly support your country, because it's your country?There are other means to an end in this Country besides running away because you don't agree with something that is happening. That is Chicken-S and you know it.Now obviously, this kind of question is on a MASSIVELY larger scale than the stupid basketball team. But I think the point works. I don't blindly support my country. It's entirely within the realm of possibility that events could happen in my lifetime that would make me want to move (although I'm not sure where I'd move to)

So just simply saying "it's your country, support it" doesn't necessarily fly with me.(Cue Ticket drop - "If any of you don't like it you can get the hell out") ;)

jthig32
09-06-2006, 11:52 AM
Well, that's in interesting stance.

For me, there are lots of things that could change in this country to make me no longer proud, and no longer supportive of it.

I support the values behind the flag, not the flag itself. If those values change, the flag ceases to mean anything.

Honestly that's a really odd way to look at things. I mean, this country was founded by apparantly chicken-S people that wanted to make a new life rather than stand by and yell for change to deaf ears.

capitalcity
09-06-2006, 12:28 PM
Lemme know when Team Texas is playing.

Until then,
f' rooting for guys who require permission to leave the country,
f' rooting for guys who don't respect their opponents cause they don't have their own shoe deal,
f' rooting for guys who I don't like, and don't want to like, just because their wearing "USA" across their chest.

mary
09-06-2006, 01:00 PM
I think its absolutely erroneous to charge those that are unhappy with the state of U.S. Basketball with lacking National Pride. In fact, it is so faulty, that I could argue that the opposite is true. Perhaps its because I have National Pride, that I have higher expectations for the way my country is represented in Olympic comptetion. Perhsaps its because I really care in the first place, that I have different ideas about we should choose individuals to attend Olympic competition. Like others, I don't want to turn this into an overly-political discussion - but the fact is it completely parallels the out-dated and ill conceived argument that its "un-American" to criticize your government (not to suggest that being satisfied with status-quo is "un-American" either).

So let me assure everyone that I care about my country, and I care about the Olympics. Growing up in an incredibly rural and somewhat isolated part of Southeast Texas, I put a high value on anything that gave me a glimpse of something happening outside of my own surroundings. I didn't grow up with a computer, there was no internet obviously, and no cable TV. My opportunities to witness events that were happening else where in the world were limited to the evening news. So every four years when the Olympics rolled around and I got the opportunity to see people from different places, different cultures and backgrounds, and diffrent lives, I was always incredibly excited to watch them. It didn't matter if it was track, bobsled, iceskating, gymnastics, diving - pretty much any event, winter or summer, I was into it. I watched Mary Lou Retton being held up by her coach, I watched Flo-Jo race down the track at lightning speed, I watched Greg Louganis hit his head on a diving board, I had a girlie-crush on Brian Bointano. My recollection of the Olympics will always be associated with watching people accomplish amazing feats. I'll always remember certain images that I felt personally inspired by - like Karie Strug (sp?) performing on the vault on one leg to help her U.S. Women clinch the team Gold that year in gymnastics (for pete's sakes, I teared up just now writing that sentence). And I have plenty of memories from foreign competitors as well. I'll never forget watching Torvill & Dean for the first time...or the swimmer from several years back that finished in last place in some long distance swimming event. Sure, I don't remember his name or even the tiny country he must've represented, but I'll never forget just being moved by his determination and his will.

So any notion that I somehow care less about National Pride, or the Olympics, or U.S. Olmpians based on my opinions of U.S. Basketball....well, let's just say that I easily reject that notion out to half court (finger swag!). I'm unhappy, and don't support, U.S. Basketball because I believe our process of sending highly paid professionals flies in the face of what I believe the Olympics should be all about - and that is giving young athletes an opportunity to acheive something that is meaningful. And I suppose that is my number one complaint against having and NBA-based olympic team, is that I simply don't find any meaning in going on a 53-0 run in international competition, especially when it means closing the door on amateur participation. Personally, I find it disgusting and its something I simply can't root for.

Take all these new winter events, for example. The fact that IOC basically allowed the X-Games to be integrated into the Olympics, simply meant that the United States would enjoy an inflated medal count because we're basically the only ones that have been participating in those types of sports for any considerable length of time. Is that something I should be proud of, and if so, why? They were meaningless! Woohoo for us, we're good at something we recently evented, yay! I'm sorry, but like someone pointed out earlier, you simply can't drop an American flag over something, and expect me to be proud of it.

I must admit, that part of this is due to the fact that I simply don't believe its possible for an American NBA-er to care as much about representing the U.S. as an amateur athlete would. That's not to say, our NBA guys aren't patriotic, or don't want to represent their country, or don't care about doing well in international competitions. I would imagine that if they are willing to sacrifice a month of thier offseason, then they probably have some incentive and some level of care. But its simply human nature to not be has "hungry" when you're already fat-n-happy. Place a loaf of bread in front of a starving man, and he'll jump for joy. Place a loaf of bread in front of hungry man, and he'll ask for some butter. That's just the way it is - the law of diminishing marginal utility, if you will.

As much as I don't watch college basketball in the regular season, I can think of nothing in professional sports that compares to the thrill and satisfaction of watching March Madness. In terms of excitement, it is by far my favorite sporting time of the year.

But back to the Olympics. What is the single greatest moment in U.S. Olympic history? Perhaps this is debateable, but I think the winner of the debate would certainly be the 1980 U.S. Men's Hockey team beating the Russians and the going on to win the Gold, and nothing the Dream Team did, or any subsequent U.S. Basketball team has or will ever come close to matching that incredible feat. As long as the Pros are in it, there will never be a Miracle on Ice moment in U.S. Basketball. Hell, they won 53 international competitions in a row, and yet, that will never surpass the thrill this country must've felt when the hockey team crowded the medal stand and celebrated an incredible and unlikely victory.

And finally, its simply not much fun to root for "world domination" - and that's the only reason the U.S. lobbied the IOC for the changes in the first place, because we were too afraid to lose. Screw that! Its the struggle that makes victory so sweet and savory to begin with (BTW, I have a Tiger Woods exemption for this, but I'll save that for another time). Its going through the battle that enchances my fandome experience. When they lose, I lose. When they win, I win. I need to feel like I'm somehow part of the process. That's why I didn't change my socks during the NBA finals, and was careful to only wear certain shirts during the game. Do you think there was anyone that went through silly fan rituals to support the U.S. Basketball team? I'd like to know if any of the ardent U.S. B-ball fans had a lucky pair of shoes that they wore during the WC.

I somehow doubt it.

jthig32
09-06-2006, 01:14 PM
You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to mary again.

ARRGG!

Great post.

chumdawg
09-06-2006, 01:25 PM
Fantastic freakin' post, Mary. I've been thinking about this issue off and on this morning, and I had many of those same thoughts--particularly the part about the pros winning it not being a meaningful thing, and also the part about the professional representatives not being hungry. Something tells me it doesn't bother them all that much to lose.

Of course, I also recollected the Miracle on Ice. I am certain you are right, that that feat will never be surpassed. Well, in terms of the accomplishment itself, I guess if a bunch of "our boys" went and won the World Cup, it would be about the same. But there were other elements at play in 1980 that aren't in play now. That was the Cold War era, and Russia represented quite a formidable foe. And that was a very, very down time for the country as a whole. The US was in desperate need of some good news, of whatever sort. In a way, when "our boys" went out and beat those Russians, it was like the whole country getting up off the mat.

And in geo-political terms, it just ain't the same environment nowadays. That's why I view the talk about patriotism vis a vis the WC of basketball to be a stretch.

There's also the whole thing about how closely tied the NBA is to hip-hop culture, and the question of how many Americans in general can relate to or even tolerate said culture. I wouldn't dismiss this angle.

SaltwaterChaffy
09-06-2006, 01:27 PM
Mary,


Awesome.

jacktruth
09-06-2006, 01:39 PM
I wish we could pin the best players of each national team against various animal groups in an evolutionary olympics. That would be so sweet. I would be pulling for the human race in every game. I hate monkeys.

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 02:42 PM
Mary that is a great post but I do question if you remember that it wasnt america that started with paid athletes. It was communist contries that had "soldiers" whose sole duty was to train for the olympics. That is why the olympics overall added Professionals. It just wasnt remotely fair to allow some to have pro athletes and some not to. Also, Just about everyone in the olympics for EVERY team is a pro athlete. They may not all be in the nba but they are professional somewhere.

u2sarajevo
09-06-2006, 02:45 PM
I haven't polled the US team so I don't know how many "care". Should we conduct polls to see if our suppport is warranted in other areas also? That seems to be popular.

I will end my part in this discussion by saying that the "big picture" is the US team is representing the USA. No matter who/how/why the players on the team got there at the end of the day the only thing that matters is that if they win my Country wins. If they lose my Country loses. And when it comes to my Country I hate losing..... anything.

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 02:51 PM
I haven't polled the US team so I don't know how many "care". Should we conduct polls to see if our suppport is warranted in other areas also? That seems to be popular.

I will end my part in this discussion by saying that the "big picture" is the US team is representing the USA. No matter who/how/why the players on the team got there at the end of the day the only thing that matters is that if they win my Country wins. If they lose my Country loses. And when it comes to my Country I hate losing..... anything.
Pretty much sums up why i changed my mind and went from wanting germany to win to wanting the US to win before the game(if you are that bored, you can look it up in the thread that i changed before the game).

mary
09-06-2006, 03:20 PM
Mary that is a great post but I do question if you remember that it wasnt america that started with paid athletes. It was communist contries that had "soldiers" whose sole duty was to train for the olympics. That is why the olympics overall added Professionals. It just wasnt remotely fair to allow some to have pro athletes and some not to. Also, Just about everyone in the olympics for EVERY team is a pro athlete. They may not all be in the nba but they are professional somewhere.

Thanks to everyone for the props. Yes, I do remember this fact and I expected someone would bring it up. The reason I didn't is because

A) Its really not relevant to how I feel about the lack of amateur/collegiate participants.

B) I don't live in those other countries, so I haven't really taken the time to survey their respective sports scenes and decide how/if they should be modified. (..and since I'm not a citizen of those other countries, I don't particularly care)

C) Its not as if the United States didn't hold comparative advantages in other areas (population, income, standard of living, etc.) over many, many other countries that participate in the olympics. I don't think we worry as much about our advantages.


U.S. Population: 298 million
Greece Population: 10.7 million

Is that remotely fair?

Underdog
09-06-2006, 03:52 PM
There's nothing wrong with rooting for other players/countries, rather than the team from the chunk of soil you were born on... Lots of people from other countries root for the U.S., so why can't we root for them? I seem to remember being lectured the other day about "free speech", yet people here seek to control how others THINK on this forum by calling people's patriotism into question? [big on free speech, but not free thought - with allies like these, who needs enemies???] One can claim that this country is fracturing, but what are you doing to become part of the solution? :p

This thread should be moved into the Political Arena, because the word "basketball" seems to be disappearing from these posts... ;)


*edit - punctuation/spelling/perfectionist...

Five-ofan
09-06-2006, 05:02 PM
Thanks to everyone for the props. Yes, I do remember this fact and I expected someone would bring it up. The reason I didn't is because

A) Its really not relevant to how I feel about the lack of amateur/collegiate participants.

B) I don't live in those other countries, so I haven't really taken the time to survey their respective sports scenes and decide how/if they should be modified. (..and since I'm not a citizen of those other countries, I don't particularly care)

C) Its not as if the United States didn't hold comparative advantages in other areas (population, income, standard of living, etc.) over many, many other countries that participate in the olympics. I don't think we worry as much about our advantages.


U.S. Population: 298 million
Greece Population: 10.7 million

Is that remotely fair?

The thing about others being pro is that if you are not rooting for the US, and for this thread to apply to you, you would have to be rooting for someone else. If you are just not rooting at all i dont really think it applies.

fluid.forty.one
09-06-2006, 06:06 PM
Do we really need any other reason to not root for the USA team than "Wade"?

u2sarajevo
09-06-2006, 06:46 PM
So... I have a question for you then fluidDirk.... If Wade came to the Mavericks would you stop being a Maverick fan?

If so then your argument is valid. If not, how is that different?

dirno2000
09-06-2006, 11:46 PM
Mary and Chum, you have both expressed that sending our pros over there to dominate isn’t any fun. Is it still not clear that we’re no longer sending pros to international competition to dominate? At this point we’re doing it because that’s our only chance to compete. The world has caught us and it’s not because of any inherent flaw in the American basketball system. They caught us because they now love the game as much as we do. Really it was just a matter of time. We don’t have much of a competitive advantage when it comes to playing to game. Sure, we’ve been playing longer as a country but if Manu Ginobli and Kobe Bryant are roughly the same age and both grew up playing the game, how much does it benefit Kobe that his dad played?

I also don’t understand the rationale “it doesn’t really hurt them to lose”. I’m pretty sure it hurts every member of that team to lose a pick up game much less a gold medal. You usually don’t ascend to that level without being a competitor. If they were that indifferent they would have laid down against Argentina.

There's also the whole thing about how closely tied the NBA is to hip-hop culture, and the question of how many Americans in general can relate to or even tolerate said culture. I wouldn't dismiss this angle.

I think you’ve hit on something here. I’ve heard more than one person use the term “thugs” to describe the U.S. team. Well I have had some dealings with Chris Bosh and he couldn’t be further from a thug. Dwight Howard was raised in the church and by all accounts, Chris Paul, Elton Brand, Shane Battier and even the hated Dwayne Wade are good guys. Carmello wears corn rows and has been caught with weed so I guess he’s the closest thing.

The fact is (and David Stern and Billy are cognizant of this), you’re always going to battle that perception as long as the league is primarily comprised of young black men.

fluid.forty.one
09-06-2006, 11:56 PM
So... I have a question for you then fluidDirk.... If Wade came to the Mavericks would you stop being a Maverick fan?

If so then your argument is valid. If not, how is that different?

Dirk and the rest of the boys would balance it out.

If the entire roster was tradeded for wade and a bunch of other non mavs in one off season (especially a bunch of non mavs that I dont like too much) then it would be hard for me to root for the mavs.

Edit: by the way, if Dirk was traded straight up for wade then I'd still be a mavs fan. Not a huge donnie fan anymore, but a mavs fan.

Underdog
09-07-2006, 12:22 AM
if Dirk was traded straight up for wade then I'd still be a mavs fan. Not a huge donnie fan anymore, but a mavs fan.

That's how I feel about Nash - as soon as he put on a Suns uniform, the love was over... My loyalty is to my team, yet I can still root for Dirk & Germany... How duelistic of me! [that whole "free will" thing...] :rolleyes:

nashtymavsfan13
09-07-2006, 12:43 AM
Dirk and the rest of the boys would balance it out.

If the entire roster was tradeded for wade and a bunch of other non mavs in one off season (especially a bunch of non mavs that I dont like too much) then it would be hard for me to root for the mavs.

Edit: by the way, if Dirk was traded straight up for wade then I'd still be a mavs fan. Not a huge donnie fan anymore, but a mavs fan.

I would still be a Mavs fan, but my fanship (is that a word?) would take a big hit if we were to trade Dirk and everybody else. If it was just Dirk for Wade, I'd still be a Mavs fan but I'd still like Dirk and probably his new team would be my second fav team.

nashtymavsfan13
09-07-2006, 12:47 AM
That's how I feel about Nash - as soon as he put on a Suns uniform, the love was over... My loyalty is to my team, yet I can still root for Dirk & Germany... How duelistic of me! [that whole "free will" thing...] :rolleyes:

See, I don't understand that. So you only love the team, no matter what players it is? I'm sort of that way, but as well as loving the team, I love the players on the team. I can't just like a player so much rooting for them to do so well for so long and than all of a sudden just cut that off and not like them at all. Nash will always be one of my favorite players, as will Dirk if he happens to leave the Mavs. I will still be a Mavs fan, but I would still like Dirk and Nash and the players I spent so long rooting for. What you are saying is that as soon as they leave you don't like them at all. To me if you like the players and you root for them faithfully when they leave you'll still feel some likeness towards them, even if you hate the team that they play for.

Wiley_e
09-07-2006, 02:00 AM
It's pretty strange what course this thread took, considering that the point in the article was a completely different one.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with rooting for the team representing your country - on the contrary! All the points made here were well intended and are in most cases indisputable..

The point the writer wanted to make however was a completely different one: it was meant for all the other games where you own country is not present. And also as a "big picture" approach since most international fans had to choose their favourite team to win it all in the course of the tournament because their own team simply didn't make it.

So if you watch any game where your favourite team is not present you tend to root for one or the other team for whatever reason. Either you simply sympathize with the underdog, or you choose to root for the team where one or more of your favourite players is a part of.

Following that logic quite a lot of "uninvolved" international fans actually should choose to root for Team USA for the latter reason. This largely was not the case - why?
That exactly was the base for the argument.

Underdog
09-07-2006, 03:36 AM
See, I don't understand that. So you only love the team, no matter what players it is? I'm sort of that way, but as well as loving the team, I love the players on the team. I can't just like a player so much rooting for them to do so well for so long and than all of a sudden just cut that off and not like them at all. Nash will always be one of my favorite players, as will Dirk if he happens to leave the Mavs. I will still be a Mavs fan, but I would still like Dirk and Nash and the players I spent so long rooting for. What you are saying is that as soon as they leave you don't like them at all. To me if you like the players and you root for them faithfully when they leave you'll still feel some likeness towards them, even if you hate the team that they play for.


No, what I'm saying is that I can root for any player/team/country that I want to regardless of who I am or where I live... I don't even need a good reason...

I loved Dennis Rodman with the Pistons, but hated him with the Spurs/Lakers... I loved the Kareem/Magic Lakers, but hated them with Shaq/Kobe... I love DWade, but hate Miami (especially Riley)... I dislike Shaq, but loved when he played for Orlando... Recently, Arenas got me into the Wizards during the playoffs - I forgot who the Wizards were after they changed their name from the Bullets! I liked Nash & Finely, but my alignment to them changed when their alignment to us changed... Are they good players? Yes... Will I root for them? Nope!

Duality makes for unpredictability - sorry if you can't read me like a book... My mind changes as reality changes... :D

...but I AM a Mavs fan - regardless of the lineup... (I'm just not always a fan of the individuals - I'm lookin' at you, Cuban!)

Usually Lurkin
09-07-2006, 08:15 AM
I'm sorry, but not preparing for play, going out drinking before games, not even knowing the name of your opponent, and just assuming that your lazy-butt will win the game because you've got a famous name is a crappy way to represent your country, and doing that doesn't deserve cheers. This country is about dedication and preparing, and doing what it takes to get the job done. It is not about expecting things to be handed to you, and then making excuses when things don't go right. For me, that's almost as bad as athletes on steroids. I don't care what uniform they have - if they are bad for sport in general then they are bad for the US, and I won't cheer for them.

alby
09-10-2006, 12:12 AM
thank you lurk.