Watching Grandson Auggie and thinking about the Warriors

Basketball 1 (1 of 1)
A bounce pass to Grandson Auggie who is in the open with an open lane to the basket.

“Thanks for making basketball fun again.”a grim immigration agent at the Canada-US Border when Steph Curry went through after playing in Toronto, as reported in a slightly fawning, but stellar, article in this week’s Sports Illustrated.

A couple of weeks ago, we went to Grandson Aggie’s basketball game (well, one of his games). I’ve read that several people have complained that the Warriors are teaching young players bad habits, I don’t think so. To me it seems like Auggie and his friends are running up and down the court, passing back and forth, shooting when they are close to the basket – and the basket is much further away when you are under four feet tall – and having fun. Being kids, they probably didn’t have to learn to have fun by watching basketball on TV, but they might have, because if the Warriors exude anything, it is Having Fun.

I know exactly how that immigration fella, in the quote at the top, felt. The Warriors are on a terrific roll and almost everybody around here is watching; Michele and I sure are. Watching the Warriors is engrossing, nail-biting at times, almost always wildly satisfying, and great fun. Basketball is probably the most athletic mainstream sport anyway, and it can be as graceful as ballet, but it is also a sport that rewards sharing. It turns out that it is fun to watch people having fun sharing.

Basketball 2 (1 of 1)
Grandson Auggie getting ready to shoot.

The Warriors are taking the fun and the sharing to a new place. As the article in Sports Illustrated points out, they are playing with Joy, just the Joy of playing (and winning). There was a time when I looked down on jocks but I am pretty much over that now. I probably started getting over it watching a pitcher in a tight game, in front of a huge crowd, let go of everything but the task at hand. That ability to concentrate, to stay present, astounds me.  Over and over again. With the Warriors, and Steph Curry in particular, it is the ability to be present in Chaos.

Basketball 3 (1 of 1)
and Grandson Auggie shoots for two.

To be present in Chaos and pass the ball to somebody with a better chance at a basket even if that person is behind you, is a lesson that the Warriors teach every game. That not bogarting the ball, that not shooting yourself if somebody has a better shot, is a great lesson to be teaching young players. Having fun is an even better lesson, even if it is not needed.

(The YouTube below is only three minutes, check it out to see what fun, exuberant fun!, look like. BTW, Curry is number 30.)


6 thoughts on “Watching Grandson Auggie and thinking about the Warriors

  1. That video was from last year. And now they are saying he is the most improved player of the year this year. This is just amazing to watch. But watching Auggie play is even more thrilling as his GrandMo.

  2. As always a great blog post. Enjoyed the video as it allowed me to better appreciate their ball handling…in the games, I see it but this clearly. I’m very curious about their practices that leads to such skill.

    And by the way, when’s our next basketball dinner night?

  3. Steve, I agree basketball is fun. Watching my son and daughter who started one in 4th grade the other in 4th grade, it is fun. One now in 7th grade playing and the other in 10th grade playing on varsity. And still fun. But you and I are in a minority. Many do not like how the game has evolved. But I think they are missing it. It is a great game, sport. A combination of physical skill, teamwork and chess like strategy. Its fun.

  4. Sorry typo, “one in 4th grade the other in 3rd grade”. And for the record my son started shooting threes in 3rd grade, but is just as happy to make the assist.

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