For those of you that didn’t watch yesterday’s Bulls-Heat game (or see the highlights), you missed out on one of the most despicable sights the NBA has ever seen. No, I’m not talking about John Lucas being jumped over like an irksome puddle in the street by LeBron James. This was much, much worse.
During the fourth quarter the ABC sideline reporter relayed a story about Carlos Boozer‘s family, which happened to be in attendance. Naturally the camera’s focused on them during the story, but what we saw through the lens of the camera was quite disturbing. Please take a look below…if you can stomach it.
Yes that is Carlos Boozer’s son (either Carmani, Cameron, or Cayden…I’m not sure) chanting “Let’s Go Heat!” during a timeout. In case you’re not a big basketball fan, I should mention one thing: Carlos Boozer plays for the Bulls.
When I saw the highlights I felt horrible for Boozer. One one hand, of course, boys will be boys and I’m sure his son just got caught up in the moment, as the announcers mentioned. But on the other hand, Boozer has always had the reputation of being soft and not being a winner. Here he is in one of the biggest games of the year against the team he will likely face in this year’s Eastern Conference Finals, and he looks up in the stands to see his son enthusiastically cheering for the other team? It just can’t feel good.
Unfortunately, Boozer’s son was just the latest victim of AFB #22: Trying To Get On The Jumbotron At Any Cost.
Now I’m not sure that the primary intent of Boozer’s son’s display was to get shown on the Jumbotron, but I can guarantee that with a group of that many children it had crossed their mind. There’s a lengthy precedent set that kids will do absolutely anything to get themselves on the Jumbotron. It usually involves some sort of group dance, elaborate wig, or shirt removal (boys only), and the priority is clear: 1)Get on Jumbotron, 2)Enjoy game.
I know they’re just kids and they can’t help themselves. Seeing yourself on a gigantic screen in front of thousands of people certainly has it’s allure, but how many groups of eight-year-olds do you know that jump on the bus and head down to the arena to see a game by themselves? Not even Kevin McAllister could figure that one out.
It’s up to the parents to police this kind of behavior. It’s fine during timeouts and when the stadium announcer is trying to hype up the crowd, but it has to be kept under control to respect the patrons who pay hard-earned money to see the game, not a bunch of kids doing the cabbage patch.
I could almost excuse the behavior if only pre-teens were guilty, but it is occasionally undertaken by equally annoying adults as well. Take for example the young lady sitting in front of us at the Clippers game on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day a few weeks ago. She and three men arrived at the game halfway through the first quarter, a sure sign that they didn’t have their minds entirely on basketball. Usually in L.A. traffic can be an excuse, but it was a holiday…no dice.
Two of her male companions seemed genuinely interested in watching Blake Griffin and co. dismantle the Nets, but she and the male friend sitting right next to her devoted 85% of their time to trying to get on the Jumbotron (the other 15% was spent on Facebook…another infraction that we’ll discuss at a later date).
Late in the game, frustrated that she hadn’t made it on screen yet, she even turned around and gave everybody in our section the egregious and audacious, “COME ON EVERYBODY! GET UP!” during one of the timeouts. Simply inexcusable.
I understand that a lot of people that go to games aren’t huge sports fans and aren’t as interested in the game as some of those around them, but there is a fine line between having a good time and being downright annoying.
The two and a half seconds of joy you get from seeing yourself on screen isn’t worth the two and a half hours of misery you put everyone else through.