My Plea To the Celtics: Winning Is What Matters

Loscy LoscyContributor IFebruary 23, 2010

ATLANTA - JANUARY 29:  Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on January 29, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Dear Celtics,

From the moment the ball is tipped to the closing seconds of the game, fans live and die with every possession. While that may seem incredibly creepy, obsessive, freaky, or even pathetic, I think it’s important to know that this happens because fans care.

Perhaps fans care too much. Perhaps fans have nothing else better to care about. But regardless of how our passion manifests itself, at least we care.

Think about franchises that are holding fire sales because staying in business is more important than winning. Luckily, we don’t have that kind of organization. Danny never wants to live through another 2007 season, and Wyc has too much money to know what to do with: a beautiful combination for GM and owner.

You play for a city that loves sports—and fortunately for us all, we’ve seen each of our four major teams at least make a run during the playoffs and be a legitimate contender. For three of those teams, we’ve seen a title hoisted during a championship parade in the last six years.

But really, only one of those teams really matters. And that’s you. You have the richest history out of all of the Boston teams. You have the most titles in its respective sport, but also the most championships in our fine city. This automatically puts the Celtics up on a pedestal—whether you like it or not. I like to think that you are the standard for winning teams.

Look, I am not asking for you to win every game. Would that be nice? Of course. Would it feel great to see you walk all over every team you play against? You bet it would. But when it boils down to it, I want to see that all of you care.

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I want to see you never give up on a play. I want to see you get a technical because of a B.S. call. I want to see you demand the ball when you’ve got the hot hand. I want to see you listen to your teammates when things aren’t going well. I want to see hands clapping during a momentous turnaround. I want to see the fire in your eyes never go out—whether you are down by 20 or up by 20.

I just want the intensity. I want the grit. I want the scrappiness. Because of how intelligent you are—and because of the talent we have—we can win so many games if the intensity, grit, and scrappiness is there.

The missing piece is to get rid of cruise control as a possible option. From the get-go, we need to be in the fifth gear and find the sixth one when necessary.

I saw this kind of effort during the first three games of the four-game road trip out West. Critics are doing what they do: criticizing. Criticizing the fact that it was Sacramento. Criticizing that it was a Kobe-less Lakers. Criticizing that it was a Portland team without half of its starters and even less of its bench. Criticizing that the Celtics were still giving up big leads at times, or showing some flat play.

Well, let them criticize. I’d rather have an ugly win than have another tick in the loss column.

I think we have to all realize that our aging team isn’t always going to play pretty. When many of the players on your team can’t rely on pure athleticism to keep you in a game, then you resort to doing anything necessary in order to win. You foul. You call. You hustle.

I love winning ugly games because it shows how physically and mentally tough you are. If you win an ugly game, the opposing team won’t forget it. It shows that the passion is still there, and winning is what matters.

Winning is what matters.

Winning is what matters.

Winning is what matters.

By any means necessary, make sure winning is what matters.

The original article can be found on loscy.com.


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