The glorious world of the NBA has fans who adorn their walls with pictures of tremendous athletes who can work magic with an orange leather ball. How many guys have LeBron James posterizing some poor second string guy trying to earn a multi-year contract and not be remembered as a cringing face on a highlight reel? How many have people have Dwayne Wade on the wall twisting and contorting his way through the lane for level of basketball awe and impossibility.
It’s not just scorers. Plenty of fans have Steve Nash slow driving past some poor susceptible guard and throwing a no look pass across his body to the right while looking left. There are millions of posters of Chris Paul tossing up an alley-oop to Tyson Chandler just about to go air born in the middle of the lane.
These are the sexy players with the sultry moves that David Stern wants to sell desperately to bring back the NBA to its former glory. Unfortunately, the blue-collar big boys only get some love on the Sportscenter top ten when they are catching a 12-foot lob a couple of feet from the rim.
No, these guys need some respect and their bread and butter needs some attention too. I am talking about rebounds. Twenty four players average more than 20 points a game, but only 9 players average over 10 rebounds a game.
Dwight Howard is leading the league with his performance in the middle for the Orlando Magic with 13.6 boards. He is a big name. There are plenty of other players. Marcus Camby is crashing the boards for the Los Angeles Clippers along with Zach Randolph. Andris Biedrins is becoming the sweet shooting lefty every coach desperately wants on the roster. Emeka Okafor is solid in Charlotte and David Lee has excelled in the new D’Antoni coached world of the New York Knicks.
Even Andrew Bogut is redeeming himself as a complete first pick bust at the Bradley Center for the Milwaukee Bucks. Yes, most of this list of power forwards and centers get to man the lanes without much love from the crowd, instead hearing more boos when they pick up a clumsy foul than cheers when picking up an errant missed free throw.
I declare that I will try and appreciate the box out as much as the buzzer beating three. I declare that every fan should encourage their seven footer, whether they are lumbering around the lane or sealing the block for a quick right jump hook.