Winning Is About Results, Not Feelings

Winning in sports is all that matters, your feelings…Not so much.

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Dylan Bair: So my big picture. We’ve already posted one on our socials, hopefully by the time this one comes out, where I was extremely hard on the Michigan State seniors that left this year for the basketball team. That is a vibe that I am going to continue with a little more positive spin.

So for my first official big picture, I wanted to talk about the HBO Max series that’s out called Winning Time. First off, this is not a paid endorsement but it is phenomenal and you need to see it. If you’re a sports fan of any semblance, you need to watch that series. It’s the best one that’s come out since The Bronx Is Burning. It’s not actually a true documentary but in The Winning Time series, there is an event that occurs and I won’t go into spoiler territory for viewers who don’t know about the history of the Showtime Lakers

The series follows Dr. Jerry Buss, when he acquires the Laker team, follows Magic Johnson and how all those pieces came together to create an NBA dynasty. Within it, there is a decision that is made that changes the course of how the team functions, operates and how they’re going to go moving forward. This brings up the principle and pretty much the sole rule that I follow, which is pragmatism.

Feelings and emotions are thrown in with fans because fans have emotional connections to their teams but sports are not about your feelings, not in what we all want, which is winning. To win you need to be brutal, a “red ass” as the phrase goes. You need to be able to be an absolute bastard at times and you cannot allow for feelings to take hold.

Now, in my personal life, I’m much more of a democratic socialist type of attitude. Everything is about fairness. It’s about equality, about sunshine and rainbows, worker solidarity and all that kind of stuff but in sports it’s the complete opposite. I’m one of the coldest individuals in the world. I will celebrate those moves to the end of time. When there is a player who’s been with the franchise for 10 years, given solid service and you cut him to make cap space in order to make a frugal move for a guy who has a bad history, like he was arrested or he was known as a problem in other franchises.

Get him anyway and you replace him with a good old boy or you replace him with an absolute mean MF guy. That is the type of thing that wins titles. In the Winning Time series, this is personified best with a phenomenal, Emmy worthy performance from Michael Chiklis, formerly of The Shield. He plays Red Auerbach, notorious godfather of the Boston Celtics dynasty that lasted decades. In that you see that there’s this subversion because Jerry Buss is a very enigmatic guy who has a lot of energy and he’s trying to get the answer out of Red Auerbach. How can I make this franchise tick? How can I make them win? They’re losers right now?

How can I be like you? Red Auerbach takes his noted cigar, throws it on the floor of the forum and tells Jerry Buss to screw off. This type of attitude is why Red Auerbach wins. It is the reason why winning dynasties last as long as they do and winn the titles they do. 

Think. How many dynasties have occurred in your lifetime? Were they pals? How many of them were friends? How many of those teams, those dynasties, would you describe as “good people”? Tom Brady and Bill Belichick weren’t pals. Tom Brady and Bruce Arians weren’t pals. Clearly LeBron James and every single one of his coaches, all 20 of them, ran out the door. 

How many times have we heard stories about guys being absolute bastards and still win. Michael Jordan was a guy that I know the city of Detroit does not like very much but in the documentary that came out during the pandemic, it showed the reason why Michael was the best, because he didn’t care. Winning is the bottom line. That’s the whole reason we do what we’re doing. We’re not here to be friends or pals or for good feels. We’re here for brass, for gold, for any of these titles in any forms that they’re in. 

There’s a point in the documentary that I think is just beautiful, where Michael Jordan’s being introspective and the documentarian is trying to get this answer out of him of regret, that he has over the way that he treated his teammates. He said, if you’re not with me and you’re not on that winning attitude, then I don’t want you. I don’t care. I don’t give a crap about your feelings, it doesn’t matter to me.

What matters to me is at the end of the season, at the end of our careers, how many of those titles have we won? I don’t care how many people tell me how good of a guy I was. I care about how many people say I was the best. That’s an attitude that’s missing in a lot of sports. 

Now we talked about the NBA and its softness. There’s a trend that I despise, which is, everybody’s pals now. You should be hating the people who you are literally competing against. It is a competition. It’s sports. It’s not real life. You should not be friends with the people who your entire wages and jobs are based around. 

If I were a coach and I saw my team of all star players yucking it up after we just lost by 20 points again to the Brooklyn Nets, then I’d be like, screw that because it’s my job on the line. It’s your job on the line and your legacy. You need to care about it. That’s the thing that’s going to be the case throughout this entire show.

This will happen whenever I’m the one talking. I’m not here to be friends with anybody, I’m not here for everybody to have fun. I’m here to win, if you’re not winning, that’s it.

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Written by Amy Price

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