Here we go again.
As I sat at my desk at work late last night, my co-workers flipped through the channels on the TV. After some debate, they finally decided on a channel. I heard the familiar sounds of sneakers squeaking, balls bouncing, and lively, thought-provoking commentary by Ron Boone.
Yep, it was the Utah Jazz’s first preseason game.
I looked up at the screen to see my boys in blue taking on the canary-clad Lakers. But then I did something that I rarely do when watching the Jazz. I turned away and commenced working.
What in the world was wrong with me? Here I was sitting there doing mindless paperwork when the Jazz were playing for the first time in nearly five months, and I couldn’t watch.
Was it the fact that it’s just the preseason? Was it because the sight of the Lakers conjured up nightmares of last May, when Kobe was practically escorted to the free-throw line by NBA officials?
Or am I just not ready for this?
Am I ready for the emotional roller coaster of an 82-game season? Am I ready for the “will he or won’t he” questions that will be surrounding Boozer and his contract status with the Jazz throughout the season? Am I ready for the day that he opts out (and he definitely will) and leaves the Jazz?
Am I ready to potentially say goodbye to Okur as well? Korver? Millsap?
Am I ready to grimace every time Harpring misses a lay-up? Am I ready to curse Sloan every time he puts in Harpring over C.J. Miles? Collins over my grandma?
Am I ready for the great wins at Boston, New Orleans, and Detroit followed by perplexing defeats at New Jersey, Minnesota, and Charlotte?
Am I ready for the Jazz to FINALLY break the streak and wax San Antonio on its home floor so we can stop hearing about how Utah hasn’t won there since 1999? Am I ready for them to rough up Ginobili in the process?
Am I ready for the head-to-head match-ups between Deron Williams and Chris Paul? Am I ready to see D-Will continue his dominance in those match-ups?
Am I ready to see Boozer use his quick first step to beat his defender for an easy two? Am I ready to see Boozer move his feet on the defensive end as though they were slabs of cement?
Am I ready to see Portland vie for the Midwest Division crown? Am I ready for the inevitable implosion of Denver? Dallas? Phoenix?
Am I ready for the news that Kobe has been selling secrets to terrorist groups in the Middle East? That he impregnated multiple Chinese women in Beijing? That he is, in fact, the spawn of Satan?
Am I ready to once again sacrifice work, family, and my ever-decreasing social life, investing my time and money to a team that always seems to be one piece away from completing the puzzle?
A team that doesn’t care about me one way or the other. A team that has consistently let me down year after year after year.
Yeah, I’m ready.