Brian Scalabrine is an iconic figure in Chicago—I know because we chanted his name when he entered a game. He is near the top of the list of our favorite Chicago Bulls players in recent years. I often wonder if he is the man the commercials refer to as the '‘Most Interesting Man in the World.”
Maybe he is the “Most Interesting Player in the Chicago Bulls’ Organization,” but if the reports are true, Scalabrine’s playing days with the Bulls, albeit brief, have come to an end.
In my most recent post, I agonized about whether I can still chant his name as he sits on the sidelines. It brings about an intriguing question.
Can we, as fans, do what is not commonplace for us by chanting “Sca-la-brin-e” when he comes to the Bulls’ huddle wearing a sharp suit while holding a clipboard?
The answer is yes and no.
We can still chant for Scalabrine if we want, but we will alienate the coaching fraternity by embracing own of their own.
Scalabrine is an engaging personality, if you have ever heard him do a radio interview. He is eloquent as a speaker, entertaining and personable. That is everything that we should want in our athletes.
If there is, an athlete who can translate those attributes into the coaching ranks, it is Scalabrine.
Imagine if the coach or manager or your favorite team carried the charisma as Scalabrine does. We would set our DVR boxes just to hear his postgame press conferences.
I picture Phil Jackson’s personality, Ozzie Gullien’s brashness and the mystique of Joel Quennevile’s mustache all rolled into one.
We relate to him.
Scalabrine is someone that we look up to by saying, “There is a guy who made it.” We embrace him as if he is one of us. We relate to him.
Sadly, that cannot be a justification of us chanting out Scalabrine’s name.
We may only do so once in a display of showing gratitude for what he has meant to the fans. Afterwards, we must treat him the same way as we would any coach. We must show him his due by respecting his position.
Very few coaches are cheered. Those who are were cheered once they have won the championship. It is improper etiquette to chant for a coach.
Most of us embraced Scalabrine for his heart, but it is time to embrace him for his X’s and O’s. He will make a fine coach and I will miss him as a player, but I would rather have him in some capacity than no capacity at all.
That being said, it is time for us to chant “Sca-la-brin-e” once more before we will not be able to do it again in good taste.