By Mary Paoletti
It always makes me happy when Sense of Humor pokes a hand up from its grave in the sports world.
The Atlanta Hawks made me smile today.
Since the Hawks eliminated his Magic on Thursday, Orlando point guard Jameer Nelson has some free time on his hands.The Hawks hoped he would spend it watching Game 1 of Atlanta's second-round series against the Chicago Bulls.Hawks spokesman Arthur Triche announced on Twitter earlier Monday that he was leaving two tickets for Nelson after the Magic guard was caught telling Bulls star Derrick Rose "catch you in the second round" after the two teams met on April 10."Things that make me happy about this job," Triche said on Twitter. "Taking a page out of Jerry Glanville's book, I think I'll follow through on Jameer's request to catch Derrick Rose in the 2nd round."
Boom: roasted. But in a delightfully gross way. Like, "OOOOH! YOU LOSE, SUCKA? But you win free tickets to a playoff game!"
My hope is that Nelson goes to Game 3. That way, he'll show he can laugh at himself and that he knows trash-talking has consequences.
Would I go?
Hell, no. I'm a painfully sore loser, and with a competitive gauntlet limited to wiffle ball, racing to the car to get shotgun, and thumb wars.
If Nelson goes to Game 3, some Hawks fans will appreciate his courage. The jumbotron will focus on where he sits, way, way up in the 300s. He will wave sheepishly and they will applaud him.
But the majority of fans? Jackholes. They're going to boo, and laugh, and chant his name in a taunting tone of voice. He will be the hangdog shit-talker, getting his comeuppance.
That's not even the part that would get to me, though. If the Hawks lost, that would be fun to see. Can you imagine watching them win? Especially if they were streaking past MVP Derrick Rose and Chicago? Rage. Rage. Rage.
It goes back to that age old argument: do you want the team that knocked you out of the playoffs to keep winning and justify your ousting? Or do you want them to not only get swept, but get shut out for the first time in NBA history? Four games, zero points.
My brain picks the former. If I was Jameer and the Hawks upset Chicago I would say, "SEE. They're really GOOD. We lost to a really GOOD team."
My heart screams the latter.
I would revel in the Hawks losing games two through five. I would rush the court after Game 5. I'd square dance with Joakim Noah. I'd name my first born son Derrick Rose Nelson. And, someday, I would enroll that child in the rival school of Jamal Crawford's son Eric. My kid would be Eric's worst nightmare in high school basketball.
"JAMAL CRAWFORD'S SON COULD WIN THE STATE CHAMPIONSHIP HERE WITH THIS THREEEE--OHHH! NO!" Gus Johnson would yell while pooping his pants. "DERRICK ROSE NELSON DOES THREE BACKFLIPS AND BLOCKS THE SHOT WITH HIS FEET! HEARTBREAK CITY!
Yeah. Sore loser.
But it's not me, it's somebody else. So I can enjoy Atlanta's pride and humor. And I'll enjoy keeping a lookout for any response from Nelson. My suggestion is for him to go to the game as one of the Luvabulls.
Looks like a winner to me.