Recognition Overlooked

By Zack Cimini

Whatever happened to an athlete being ecstatic with the merit of being an all-star athlete? Five to ten years ago when an athlete earned an All Star or Pro Bowl spot, it was looked at highly upon the rest of the league and its professionals. Lately though, athletes will forgo the past standard, and shake it off by declining the invitation.

Being injured is an excellent reason to sit out the Pro Bowl game. The overwhelming amount of treatment an athlete needs just to perform weekly, requires a considerable part of an athletes daily routine. If an athlete can go through the rigorous regimen a whole season, than why can?t they do it for one more game? The whole purpose for an all-star event is to keep the sports fan based interested and entertained. Besides a sports championship and playoffs, there isn?t as much devoted media attention to a sporting event than the yearly all-star game.

It?s mind boggling how a player can accept an all-star spot and pull out just a few weeks before the game. All of these athletes know a good month or two ahead of time that they are selected. If they don?t want to play, they should save themselves the embarrassment of making up a lame injury excuse. Don?t get me wrong, there are plenty of deserving all stars that get their chance when someone drops out, and it?s great to see them get their first of many trips.

This year, Patrick Surtain was given a Pro Bowl spot after Chris McCallister dropped out with an injury. Only a few days later, Surtain also withdrew his name due to a groin injury. Let?s not question either?s decision, because a cornerback needs a true balance of recovery to not deter their progress. Nate Clements of the Buffalo Bills, was then next in line for the standout achievement. Clements did an outstanding job this season, and is set to takeover Surtain and McCallister anyways.

This is a prime example of what is happening in the NFL. Are the athletes getting bored with the annual trip to Hawaii? There is no possible way, that if Surtain or McAllister were going to their first Pro Bowl that they would?ve declined because of injury. Once the athlete has molded themselves into the league, they look at everything at a different perspective. Who wouldn?t, maybe the athlete just wants some down time to spend with his family, before another rigorous hectic off-season of training.

In the NBA, countless star athletes opt to not perform for the USA Dream Team. The downfall of talent on the court, was witnessed on a global level last summer, and will continue to until the right players decide to represent their country. No one is going to force that athlete to go out of their way to diminishing their free time. Hopefully though, those athletes will see what has happened and make a decision solely on representing their country. The 1990 Dream Team symbolizes the meaning of the word dream. This was a team before money was an issue, yet it was filled with laid back and now classic icons.

If money was in the NBA in 1990, would that team have been assembled?


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