I don't want to preach hate for Dwayne Wade. Hate is bad for the soul, and it's rarely justified anyway. If we could walk a mile in the other person's shoes, we'd surely understand why they do what they do. But I would like to preach some love for the game of basketball.
I think that anyone who has ever played sports, from the playground to the coliseum knows that the heart and soul of sports is the honor system. Even when there are referees to enforce the rules of the game, it is really the commitment of players to play hard but safely that keeps sports from degenerating into mayhem.
Of course, cheap shots happen, and everyone who has ever played, I'm pretty sure, has been guilty of one or two. Most of these are caused by the heat of battle. Some players play along the edges of what contravenes the rules and the spirit of the game. Our own KG did that. Laimbeer was famous for it. As far as I can recall, though, no player has so flagrantly and blatantly flouted both the rules and the intention ofthe game as consistently as Wade has done. It's time for the league to do something.
Of course, the NBA is totally complicit in what Wade does, so it's silly to call on the league to do something. But I still think every fan should demand that a serious penalty be applied to Wade, such as a year's suspension from the game. Wade's astoundingly egregious flop the other night was insult added to injury. For the same man who has deliberately hammered, clearly intending to injure in some cases, so many other players to pull off such an outrageous flop when not even touched at all, or barely touched, is something that should push the wrong button with fans, if you ask me. For one thing, it shows what should have been obvious for a long time, that this guy is an actor, and a bad one at that. How many times have we seen him pretend to somehow accidentally kick someone in the balls, or leg sweep them to the floor, or bash them in the face, etc.? He wasn't a good actor then, but many defended him, choosing to believe his pretenses. Believe no more. He is a faker.
I mean, really, how do you kick a guy in the groin, leg sweep a guy, bash a guy in the nose, rake a guy across the eyes, slam into a guy with your elbow on the run, etc., ACCIDENTALLY?! It never was credible. But now that we have seen the flop of all time thrown by this guy, let's stop pretending that he's not a pretender.
If the league refuses to punish Wade for his relentless gooning, then it needs to allow full violence in the game. It's so unfair to other players who are honoring the rules and spirit of the game to put themselves in the position of making themselves vulnerable around Wade. If Wade is going to be allowed, no, encouraged to clobber them, they need to have a right to clobber him. But the better course would be for the league to make Wade take a year to think about whether he really wants to play basketball, or whether perhaps he'd like to compete somewhere like the UFC. I'm not sure if they allow flopping there, though...