I recently celebrated a birthday.
A typical birthday tradition in our household is that the one being celebrated gets to select their meal and dessert of choice. It’s a pretty sweet gig getting to fully select whatever it is that you want.
My meal of choice is a shrimp boil. The perfect medley of corn, red potatoes, shrimp and sausage boiled along side some old bay, creates a unison that can seldom be matched.
Once the meal is finished, I quickly move on to the dessert of choice, the coconut cream pie. I take my first bite, and it is in this very moment that I completely forget the shrimp boil.
There is a new flavor in town, and it very quickly settles in, causing me to completely forget what was ever occupying this space before. This is the problem with getting too much of your favorite things. After a while, one has to replace the other, which leaves a subtle disharmony in the minds of the consumer. Not that there is anything wrong with shrimp boil, or that it is any less enjoyable as it was 30 minutes prior to the pie, but it is old news. It will only then be enjoyed again as a leftover dish that lacks the certain pizzazz of a fresh out the pot meal.
At this moment you are reading this and really wondering how shrimp boil ties in with basketball, and in particular the Golden State Warriors. Let me dispense this analogy now.
The Golden State Warriors were rocking for two seasons now. After fighting through some early adversities two years ago and taking a gamble on the injury prone Steph Curry, the Warriors gambles paid off. They mastered the art that Kenny Rogers sang about about knowing when to hold them and when to fold them. They made a super team in a budget crunched league. They had the potatoes and corn base in role players like Harrison Barnes (now with Dallas) and Andre Iguodala. They had the spicy old bay in Draymond Green and Klay Thompson. Of course the shrimp (size joke not intended) is Steph Curry, the most vital component of the boil. They were a perfect concoction that was rocking and rolling.
The problem with the Warriors was that they tried to add coconut cream pie to the meal. Kevin Durant has for a long while been one of my favorite players. It is because of him, Russell Westbrook and James Harden that I even took an interest in the NBA to begin with. I loved the OKC Thunder as a young team finding success with great players. When KD announced that he would be leaving OKC to join the Warriors early in July, I ached. It broke my heart. Not only because he was leaving my favorite team, but because he was leaving to go to a team that I simply cannot root for. I want KD to win championships, but not with that team and not with those players.
Bias aside, KD is new in town. He is a dynamic player who is the talk of the town. Everyone loves him and his deadly three pointers, monster dunks, and shimmy on the free throw line. He is the definition of coconut cream pie. The problem with the pie in this situation is that you have three other guys on the team who thought they were the pie. On 75% of the NBA’s teams they could be the pie. There cannot be four pies. Instead there is simply the left over shrimp boil.
Draymond Green should never be the fourth best player on a team. Klay Thompson should never be the third best player on a team. Steph Curry should never be the second best player on a team. There have been so many problems on teams with third man players. The third man is always neglected and therefore will do anything to get more attention, get the ball more, or simply act like a fool in order to get more media coverage.
Then the fool goes and gets greedy. They ask for more money which cannot be given. They ask for more playing time which cannot be given. They ask and demand in a market that is not set up for demands from more than one player at a time. And now the Warriors will get squeezed out of demands by four of the best players in the league.
This isn’t the first time we have seen an all star combination come together and it certainly won’t be the last. In the past it has had its ups and downs, and who knows what will happen when the Warriors take to the court this season. But one thing is for certain, it is rarely the case where you can have your pie and eat it too. Reaping the benefits of something that is too good to be true are seldom what you’d expect.
So next time you take the wifey to Joe’s Crab Shack, take a look on the menu… I doubt you’ll find a coconut cream pie.