Twitter was all over it as soon as the moment above was aired — “good job, good effort” quickly became a punch line, the joking t-shirt, an email signature line, a sarcastic joke among basketball fans.
But it wasn’t a joke to 9-year-old Jack Meyer who was saying it.
In a cynical world where we would only have said that sarcastically, to be a Celtics troll on a Heat team that just dropped Game 5 at home, this young boy was being a true fan. You know, like you used to be once. He loves his team and was trying to be supportive in their darkest hour. He was genuine.
“For those people who thought I was being sarcastic, you’re wrong,” Meyer said at his family’s Coral Gables home Wednesday. “I was being enthusiastic. I was saying the truth. I would never hurt the Heat’s feelings like that.”
“Based on their expressions, they didn’t seem happy being beaten by four points. I wanted to cheer them up,” he said. “I really meant it.”
There was a time when we all were pure fans like that, a window that now may be shortened by the Internet. But I, for one, hope Meyer holds on to that as long as he can. The sports world — and the world in general — could use more of that and fewer cynical trolls.
Video: Spoelstra, Bosh, Rondo talk Boston Game 5 win
Above you see some highlights of the post-game press conferences in Miami after Boston came in and stole Game 5, taking a 3-2 series lead (with the chance to close it out at home Thursday).
Erik Spoelstra used a lot of vague coach speak and sounded more like a motivational speaker than a anything else. Chris Bosh got more time at the podium than he did on the court — Spoeltra needs more Bosh in Game 6, not less.
Rivers and Rondo talked about what we all saw — the focus on the team, about them grinding out and staying in it when the Heat were hot, giving themselves a chance. They dealt with adversity, Miami wilted when faced with it.
Quote of the day: Wow, LeBron just does not get it
That pretty much sums up the mental difference in this series — Kevin Garnett or Rajon Rondo or no other Celtic would ever say that. Because it’s not all you can ask for, it’s not all LeBron or Miami should ask for. Winning is all you can ask for. Execution at the end of games rather than standing on the perimeter as a decoy is another thing we can ask for.
As Wojnarowski notes in his article there still seems to be a sense around the Heat that they thought this would be easier, that their adversities would melt away and they could claim their rings. That’s not how it works. You have to become better, you have to reach new levels, you have to strive to overcome to reach your goals. Obstacles do not melt away. You have to overcome them.
You have to think that giving yourself a chance to win is not all you can ask for.