Thursday, April 19, 2007

SuperStar Be: Gilbert Arenas

One of the hallmarks of this blog is waiting until a story is stone-cold to pick its bones. Some of that is intentional; I want to write something that's not just repeating the latest news. And that means waiting until more of the story comes out.

Well, the vulture strikes again, as I finally have gotten to Gilbert Arenas now that he's injured and his team is looking like it will lose in the first round of the playoffs. But I bet you the Wizards win 2-3 games: look at who they play. The Bulls? Raptors? I don't see either young team being consistent enough to sweep the Wizards.

Gilbert Arenas Be Black and...Nerdy
Or geeky, depending on where you stand on the age-old nerd/geek typology. Let's examine the evidence, from that Esquire article eons ago:
OCD traits: plays video games non-stop, collects many different items
Awkwardness in Intimacy traits: does not like women "touching him" in his words
Odd pursuit of greatness traits: has a hyperbaric chamber in his house, tries to win 3-point contests shooting 1-handed

Looks like a solid case to me! I think that Gilbert really isn't as complex, behaviorally, as bloggers have made him out to be. Brian from Yaysports has been on this from nearly Day 1, and I agree with him. Although, I don't think anyone else but MCBias is pushing the nerd/geek hypothesis.

Gilbert Arenas Be an Underappreciated Late Bloomer
I believe this may be a reason for Gilbert appreciation among bloggers. If you look around the sports bloggosphere, you see a lot of people who took odd paths to a writing career. It's not the kid straight out of school who's writing the top blogs. It's your 28 year old single who came out of school and ended up doing work that wasn't what he/she went to school for, and for pennies at that. If, instead, they came out of school, instantly started making 100K, and dated/married all the cheerleaders/athletes, or what have you, they wouldn't be blogging.

Similarly, Gilbert started slow in high school, college, and the NBA before becoming a success there. He has a chip on his shoulder about all the setbacks he faced initially in each field, and it shows. Frankly, that's attractive to a lot of people. Men follow guys with chips on their shoulder, as long as the chipster can back up his talk. Women desire a guy with an edge, the "outsider" who isn't too outside. And Gilbert pulls off this delicate dance in an enviable way, most of the time. Although that verbal attack on LeBron James makes me think that Gilbert isn't as mentally secure and confident as Gilbert should be for the great seasons he's had. In fact..

Gilbert Arenas Be Sad
There's something about Gilbert's eyes, even when he's smiling, that saddens me. Maybe it's just a physical phenomenon, and not the way he feels in his soul. But the man grew up with his father as his only parent, homeless here and there, and with a father who was emotionally distant at that. He holds onto things way too long; the chip is a little too deep in his shoulder when he talks about the rejection of the NBA (2nd round draft pick) and USA basketball (being cut from the squad). As a human being, I worry about Arenas as he ages and loses his athletic gifts; I have a feeling he won't age happily or contentedly. Being driven is a blessing when you're trying to get to the top of the mountain; but it won't let you examine the scenery at the top as you slide down the other side.

Sheesh, there MCBias goes, pitying another millionaire. Get a grip, MC; shouldn't you be making fun of those overpaid, oversized humans? Maybe next time I'll pick a superstar who deserves to be savaged. We'll see.


  1. Gilbert is Basketball Sociopath. I don't mean that in a bad way, but he possesses sociopathic tendencies: he has no conscious (according to noted moralist Kobe Bryant); he harbors deep grudges over normal snubs, and uses them as motivational fuel to overachieve; he seems to have an insatiable need for being respected, to the point where his need for pure respect for his abilities is more important than perhaps even winning. Though winning, it should be noted, is the best way to obtain respect, and Gilbert is aware of that, too.

    Great post.

  2. What kind of post is that? So apparently its wrong to use obstacles as motivation to challenge yourself. I don't think he needs a psychiatrist because he doesn't give up on his goals. Gilbert Arenas has fun with the game of basketball and he puts on a great show for the fans. He's a special person and a well needed break from the overrated Kobe Bryant's of the league. And also if you plan on writing an article to be taken seriously don't take previous interviews out of context. He said he doesn't like women being all up on him, touching him. Thats a bit different than him just saying he doesn't like women touching him in general. Love him or hate him, he is a positive influence on the NBA today. If you can't agree with that, well, then your probably just another Kobe fan who's still upset he scored 60 on him.

  3. Ha, talking about his problems. Dear sir, I think you need to think about yourself. Yeah he called out Lebron and holds grudges. Who are you to judge, God? Gilbert is a fun loving excellent person, who has a work ethic I wish I had. He is one of the few respectable role models in the NBA, he is my hero. And just because your mad you will never amount to anything, doesn't mean you need to clown on him.

    Zero to Hero