I love summer. When I close my eyes and teleport to my ‘paradise,’ I find myself walking home from swimming at the beach or a lake (when it comes to natural bodies of water I am agnostic. Ocean/lake/pond/river + sunshine = I coming!), returning to the pad to pour a beverage, and settling into an Adirondack chair on the deck to watch the sunset.
Sigh. Makes me smile even thinking about it.
Continuing this summer fever dream, I will stay outside and sink into peak level presentness until every shade of color has faded from the dusk sky. But when that time does come—and before we go on, let’s quickly pour one out to having a drink and watching the sunset: cheers!—But, when night does fall, I’m ready to go inside, throw something on the TV, and vibe on a chill evening groove. As an NBA head and general sports fan, that thing is often sports, and with it being summer, that sport is baseball.
When it comes to baseball, at this point in my life, I can’t watch one minute of any team but the Red Sox. And even then—in full disclosure—I had trouble fully locking in for the Sox 2018 World Series run—I’m sorry! (Though I would be remiss not to include this, I did freaking love Mookie Betts and I think the trade was all-time dumb.)
If we jump back to Summer ’07, I was serving at Paradiso Pizza in Northampton, MA, and every night after work I would go to my boy Graham’s house to watch the game. Every night. And I loved it.
However, I think back then we didn’t know better (it was a different world in 2007, the iPhone came out that year!)? And you know, the game sure seemed more dramatic and uptempo when we were perhaps less than sober… But here in 2020, older, sober me thinks MLB is boring as hell.
But no MLB this summer friends! Oh no. This year, surrounded by a heaping pile of s**t we have one golden beacon of hope: summer hoops. I love it. Today games start at 12:30 and will go straight for 11 hours. Holy shit.
As a hoops fan who traverses the summer on a breadcrumb diet of Ben Simmons IG workout clips and Harden Drew League videos, this is beyond comprehension. I said in our fantasy league group text that going from no games for four months to this tsunami schedule, is like a junkie going from prison to an opium den. I mean it’s surreal. And you know what? It’s amazing!
So what if this becomes the norm? The plan is for the 2020-2021 season to start in December and go through the summer and perhaps this cadence becomes the law of the land going forward?
As a sports fan that is NBA #1, NFL a distant #2, and no real #3, I say, yes please! In this world, my two sports would carry me, like the Cloak of Levitation, through the cycle of the year. Wake up on Jan. 1, watch basketball, when the Finals end in August I switch over to Hard Knocks, before I know it I’m deep into a Cam-Newton-Pats-Christmas-Eve game, and then the whole carousel resets.
Okay let’s put my Cape Cod beach house fantasy aside (I didn’t specifically mention the Cape in the opening, but that’s basically what I was thinking about. That said, my friend’s family lakehouse in Fairlee, VT is right there.), but let’s also put COVID aside—I know, feels impossible, but just for a moment!—and let’s just say it’s a typical, normal summer.
Can we all agree adding hoops to #SummerLife would be amazing? Here are some scenarios that make me weak in the knees:
Wednesday night, posting up at the patio bar of a Mexican restaurant with the boys, drinking margs, and watching the Celts.
Watching the Sunday matinee game on my phone at a pool.
Setting up the projector in the backyard, hosting friends, and watching playoff ball around the fire.
Pregaming at the bar and having a big Celtics win propel the crew to a magical Summer night.
I mean come on, think about the possibilities! I know right now we’re fixated on COVID—as we should be!—and the craziness of this whole situation. But if the world and Summer hoops survive this horror, we could be at the dawn of a beautiful new era.