It boggles my mind when there is more talk about a player or team on the losing side than there is about the winners. People would point to the winning team becoming the champion because of a miscue by the opponent. Sidney Crosby’s Golden Goal? Ryan Miller let in an easy one through his legs. Joe Carter’s World Series clinching home run? Mitch Williams grooved a fastball down the middle.
A more recent example is the Raptors win over LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Many spend the whole night and the next couple of days trying to figure out what went wrong with the Cavaliers. While it is unusual for a Cavs team to lose by 34 points, there has been no attention being paid to the work of DeMar DeRozan and how he, without Kyle Lowry and Serge Ibaka, was able to manhandle the defending Eastern Conference champs.
People think it is fun to bring up losing. They always bring up the 1966-1967 Toronto Maple Leafs, the last Maple Leafs team to win the Stanley Cup. Today, it is the Cleveland Browns who are coming off a season where they did not win a single game.
More recently, talk around the media sees them encouraging teams like the Maple Leafs to lose as many games as possible in order to be in a position to select the best player in the upcoming draft. It used to be the only incentive to lose a game is money. In the past, gamblers would fix a boxing match to ensure the underdog would win over the favourite thus collecting a big payout. Now, it’s lose and you can be the first to pick the next franchise player. What’s really the difference?
I’m guessing there is no such thing as a perfect execution, where a player does well and outmatches their opponent. When they talk about skill, it’s mostly the lack of it rather than having an abundance of it.
For the life of me I can’t understand why the media wants to talk about losing. I always thought people want to associate themselves with winners. It is one thing to learn from losing, it’s another to dwell on it.