Is the Big 3 the next big thing? Will the NBA get involved in the Big 3? How will the success of the Big 3 affect the game of basketball? Will Ice Cube remains a major part of the Big 3 league? The Big 3 basketball league just completed its inaugural season and needless to say it was a success. Ice Cube and the other people involved created an appealing commodity, having the games travel city to city was ingenious. This format allowed the games to become the main attraction in each city.

We know the game of basketball has become a global sport and the NBA has been working hard to expand the game with regards to the games lasting well into the summer. The NBA summer league is becoming more successful each year. Ticket sales have increased for summer league games, more of the current NBA stars are attending games. By the stars attending the games, this gives the fans more incentive to attend summer league. The NBA pre-season starts in October and the summer league ends in July, this leaves just two months without professional basketball. The Big 3 goes to the end of August. What if the Big 3 was played during the months of August and September, this would allow fans to watch highly competitive games all year round. The Big 3 had all this success without the help of the NBA, if the NBA would help promote the Big 3 league the success would skyrocket. In my opinion, it would be wise for the NBA to get involved.

Just imagine how more much success the Big 3 league would have if the NBA got involved and if more of the more well-known retired NBA players got involved. If Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Rasheed Wallace, and Tim Duncan were to play in the league I believe every game would be sold out to watch them play. After the Big 3 championship, the Big 3 can put together an all-star team and the Big 3 all-star team play pre-season games against NBA teams. Doing this will benefit all parties because there are several players in the Big 3 league that can contribute to an NBA team. The NBA for some reason have decided that these players are too old to play in the NBA, but after watching the Big 3 games one can see that players like DeShawn Stevenson, Stephen Jackson, Rashard Lewis and Ricky Davis can still be viable players in the NBA. NBA teams may find that veteran leadership they need to carry their team farther into the post season.

Ice Cube has found a diamond my only fear is if the NBA does get involved will they find a way to push Ice Cube out or limit his involvement. The Big 3 will be bigger than the G league because the Big 3 can provide household names to attract views. Is the Big 3 the next big thing, yes it is and it can only get bigger.

What is a professional athlete’s social responsibility? How does this social responsibility affect his or her career? Does their social responsibility affect their choice of teams to play for?

I ask these questions because recently we have seen LeBron James make comments concerning the state of the country and the impact it is having on the community. Kevin Durant has made disparaging comments about Donald Trump, which he states he will not go to the White House if invited. We have seen Carmelo Anthony marching with the citizens of Baltimore protesting the situation surrounding Freddie Gray.

In light of the Colin Kaepernick situation, Colin is currently unemployed because of his stance against injustice. I am not saying the same type of black balling of players will happen in the NBA based on the player’s position or activism regarding social issues but how does it affect their career decisions. Will a player not sign with a certain team if the owner has different political or social views? For example, Dan Gilbert the Cleveland Cavaliers owner is a Donald Trump support and LeBron James was a Hilary Clinton supporter. LeBron has express disapproval of how Trump is handling certain issues. Can LeBron work for someone who has a different view point on matters that affect his community? Can Dan Gilbert employ a player who speaks out loud against people or policies he may support?

The professional sports leagues always want players to be role models, they even have morality clauses put in some players contracts. Do owners expect players to appear as role models in the situation they deem acceptable? Most players are role models or heroes to the people for the areas they grew up in, therefore shouldn’t the concerns of these people take precedence?  A professional athlete’s popularity does not last long, will he or she use their platform to pacify many or help those in need?

 

We are all well aware of the situation regarding Colin Kaepernick but was refreshing was Mark Cuban statement. Mark Cuban stated he encourages players to exercise their constitutional rights. There are many people who believe that athletes should not be activist or involve themselves in political issues. Some people have these beliefs but one has to remember they are still considered Black or African-American athletes. This clearly indicates they are Black first before they became professional athletes they were Black after they retire they will still be Black. Because someone is rich and famous does not absolve them from being Black.

The mind set of some people is that athletes are rich and famous, therefore they do not experience life as other black people. That statement itself is troubling, people are suggesting because a person has reached a certain level of success he or she should not be concerned about the rest of the people who look like them. LeBron James may arguably the most famous professional Black athlete in the world today but some still wrote the “N” word on his property. Just think for a minute how cruel and confusing this world is, you are a person who has millions of people of all races wearing your jersey, your sneakers, wanting your autograph or wanting a picture of you. Then one person can destroy all the love you received from these fans by calling you the “N” word. How do you explain this to your children, how do you explain to your children that you are remaining quiet about issues concerning the black community?

People need to remember these athletes may reside in nice neighborhoods but they could not move their entire family into these neighborhoods and all their family members are not recognizable.  I say they are not recognizable because having a famous nephew does not mean people will know this and treat you with the respect you deserve. How many people know what Dwayne Wade’s cousin looks like, so if his cousin is mistreated based on his race should Dwayne Wade remain silent. How do you have a platform and your family members, people you grew up with and friends are experiencing harsh racism and you not say anything?

Athletes should not have to choose between standing up for what they believe in or a pay check. Black athletes are more than accountable to the team and fans, they have family and their community to think of. Without family and their community they may not be the professional they are today. In my opinion, every person regardless of race needs to work to move their community further.

I am sure everyone has read and have their opinions about Kyrie Irving requesting a trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers. No one is admitting who and why this information was leaked but it is obvious who leaked this information has an agenda and I for one would like to know what that agenda is. Regardless of the agenda, I have noticed Kyrie has been receiving some criticism for making this request.

People have asked the question why Kyrie would want to leave a team they can potentially compete for an NBA championship every year. Others believe Kyrie is on an ego trip and just wants to be the main player on a team and does not care about winning. First I disagree if was just about being the main player on a team he would not have listed San Antonio or Minnesota as destination he would like to be traded to.

Believe it or not winning is not the most important thing to some people, maybe being happy is more important. Maybe Kyrie thought winning would make him happy or allow him to tolerate certain things. In my opinion winning championships became part of the measuring stick of a great player with the success of Michael Jordan. Jordan six rings make him the standard in the modern NBA but are Karl Malone, Charles Barkley, Allen Iverson and John Stockton not great players because did not win championships. Would Scottie Pippen be 1 of the 50 greatest players if he wasn’t on those Jordan championship teams? Did Kevin Durant join Golden State just to win a championship or did he like the way they play the game? People consider Kobe Bryant to be one step under Jordan, people always refer to Kobe’s five rings but people forget Kobe was in the passenger seat for three of the rings. Winning championship does not define how great a player is, many of the best to ever play the game has not won a championship or may have just won one championship.

What I have recently learned is that money, fame or recognition is not always the best thing in life. For many people the best thing in life is happiness and the pursuit of happiness can make you happy. If Kyrie is making a mistake by leaving Cleveland so be it but a true fan would support him no matter what decision he makes about his career. As far as him being a fool for wanting to leave, only a fool would put what another man deems great over his own happiness.